TV REPORTS KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT 1/18: The march to the Royal Rumble continues, plus Vince McMahon-Bret Hart follow-up, Undertaker visits Raw
Jan 18, 2010 - 9:27:00 PM
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KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT
JANUARY 18, 2010
LIVE FROM UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE
-The Martin Luther King vignette aired, as it does every year on MLK Day. Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler introduced the show and hyped John Cena & Kofi Kingston vs. Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase, plus the guest hosts Jon Heder and Don Johnson.
-Justin Roberts introduced Mr. McMahon. Cole introduced a video clip showing McMahon giving Bret a cheap kick after their handshake. McMahon stepped into the ring and addressed the crowd. He said life is about decisions, and sometimes in business you make good decisions, sometimes not. He said one bad decision was bringing Raw "to this God-forsaken community." He said he made the mistake two weeks ago to allow Bret to return to WWE. He said he made the decision to kick him in the gut and leave him humbled and humiliated. He said last week he made the decision to block Bret from returning to WWE. He said he did that for the fans so they could remember the way he was. "You don't want to remember Bret for the way he is," he said. "Bret is an apologetic, humble broken down old war horse who needs to be put down." He said that's what he does. "When they are no longer of value, it is my decision to put them down." He said fans may not like it, but he had an analogy for them, saying they spit their gum when it runs out of flavor. He said he chewed Bret until he lost his flavor, then spit him out. He said if he let Bret stay here, it wouldn't been a disease of some kind.
Undertaker interrupted and walked out. McMahon told him, after the full ring intro, he said he wasn't done saying what he was going to say. He said it's his time and his show. Taker said, "The way I see it, it's my time now." McMahon appeared intimidated. He said he came out there to address Shawn Michaels, but he wanted to tell McMahon something his own ego won't allow him to admit. "You see, there aren't many of us left, but I was there 12 years ago in Montreal." He said he sawthe whole thing then, including the fear in his eyes then and now. "You screwed Bret Hart," Taker said. "Not once. But twice. And now you're terrified of the consequences. As you should be." He said what he did was the act of a coward. McMahon nervously said he respectfully disagrees with his point of view, then conceded the ring to him and left.
Taker then said: "Stubborness, anger, denial. Those aren't just the attributes of Vince McMahon. They also lie in the soul of Shawn Michaels." He said a year ago he vowed that he would go to WrestleMania and break his winning streak. He said Michaels proved that he is Mr. WrestleMania, the streak is still in tact. He said for more than a month Michaels has been trying to get his attention, requesting a rematch at WrestleMania. He said he stands before everyone with his answer, and he wants to deliver it personally. Michaels's music played and out he walked. Lawler said maybe Shawn should leave well enough alone.
Michaels stood six feet from Taker in the ring. The crowd began chanting "HBK! HBK!" He milked the moment. Then he said, "Here I am, Dead Man." He said he is anxiously waiting for his answer. Taker said Michaels came closer to all of the others, but he still failed. He said a rematch would just result in another bitter disappointment. He said he has nothing to prove to him, so his answer is no. The crowd booed.
As Michaels began to protest, Taker said if he's convinced he can beat him, he'll give him that opportunity tonight. The crowd cheered loudly and chanted "HBK" again. Michaels said no because if he beats him, he wants it on the grandest stage of them all. He then said he's going to earn it by winning the Royal Rumble and he will chose to face him for his World Title. Taker said winning the Rumble is his only chance at salvation. Michaels stepped toward Taker and said he will see him at WrestleMania and "your streak, your title, your soul will be mine."
Great segment. They managed to do it without (a) insider references, (b) catering to Internet fans, (c) acknowledging that wrestling "is fake," (d) yelling, (e) swearing, (f) being nasty toward women or minorities, (g) saying the word "spot," "tweak," "ratings," or "buyrate," (h) referencing bookers or booking, or (i) injecting "real life" issues. I just wanted to point that out to TNA creative/management, because they might want to start watching Raw and take some notes on the product they find time to rip but not watch. [c]
1 -- SHEAMUS vs. EVAN BOURNE
Sheamu's Rumble opponent, Randy Orton, walked out in the opening minute and walked slowly to the ring. Bourne got in some early offense, but Sheamus cut him off and decimated him quickly with a pump kick and running released Razor's Edge, the Celtic Cross. Cole pushed that the Orton presence caused Sheamus to be a half second away from losing the match in the opening minute.
WINNER: Sheamus in 2:00.
-Orton entered the ring and had a staredown with Sheamus. Sheamus then backed up and grabbed his title belt. He walked back up to Orton and held his belt in the air. The crowd booed. Sheamus then walked out. No words exchanged, but tickets were sold for that match even without a babyface - in part because both characters are so well-defined as heels and a heel vs. heel match is a rare novelty in WWE.
-Backstage Triple H approached Michaels and was about to talk to him about the Undertaker situation when Don Johnson walked up to them. Hunter stopped and welcomed him. Johnson said he's a big fan of his. Johnson asked if they had seen Jon Heder. Michaels said he doesn't know who Heder is. Hunter told Michaels he'd talk to him later. Michaels walked away and Hunter told Johnson that he thinks Heder is an idiot. Johnson acknowledged that they had an incident in the past. Hunter thanked Johnson for being professional enough to show up on time. Heder then walked up to someone he thought was Heder, dressed up as Napoleon Dynamite. When he turned around, it was Carlito dressed up as Dynamite. Johnson made an awkward face. [c]
-Cole and Lawler plugged the main event tag match again.
-Jack Swagger walked out and said last week was a fluke. He said he's an "All-American American American American." He said when he's in the Royal Rumble, he'll drop anyone who gets in his path. He issued another "All-American American over the top rope challenge." He dared Santino to accept the challenge. Santino's music played. He walked out dressed as Miami Vice era Don Johnson. He said he's a member of the IDJFC, the Italian Don Johnson Fan Club. He said he found a more-than-suitable substitution, Mark Henry.
2 -- JACK SWAGGER vs. MARK HENRY
Henry quickly and easily fended off Swagger's attack and pressed him and threw him to the floor in 15 seconds.
WINNER: Henry in 0:15.
-They went to the back where Dallas Star great Mike Modano got out of a limo with the Bella Twins. Oh, it's Jon Heder. He said it's kind of weird and exciting. He told someone in the limo not to get out until he tells them. He exclaimed, "Go Nashville!" The Bellas told him it's Knoxville, actually. He said, "Go Knoxville!" [c]
-WWE Fact: Since the Royal Rumble's inception in 1988, more than half of the Royal Rumble winners have gone on to win the title at WrestleMania.
-Justin Roberts introduced Jon Heder and Don Johnson, who were led to the ring by the Bella Twins. Cole said, "This is going to be fun." Well, that got me excited. Johnson said he's happy to be there. Heder interrupted and said, "We know exactly what you're all thinking, right? How awesome it must be to have real life movie stars here. Let's hear it for movies!" Some fans cheered, most sat on their hands (as Heder intended) Johnson said what people really want to see is the main event featuring DX. Okay pop, but nothing special. Heder said DX isn't really working fo rhim. He said it's not that DX isn't great. He said, "They're okay. But I need something new." He's the new no. 1 babyface G.M. among men over age 11. He then went into some local college football talk that got the crowd booing him. He then introduced his "good, close, personal friend, The Miz."
Miz entered the ring and said he received a text from Triple H that said Don Johnson thinks he should host Raw alone. Miz said, "Doesn't he realize his movies have grossed over $300 million dollars." Heder said $358 million domestic. Miz said he means no disrespect to Don, because "back in the day, you were what I am right now - the hottest thing on television." He said everybody wanted to be him. He said that other guy who rode his coat tails is the guy nobody remembers. Johnson said everybody remembers Phillip Michael Thomas, "Tubs." Miz said on Raw they have a name for that guy - MVP. Miz said MVP thinks he can play on his level. Heder said, "That would be a Miz-take." The crowd booed. Heder said the crowd didn't get it. MVP stepped out and apologized to Johnson for having to participate in this fiasco. MVP said he lived in Miami for a very long time and apologized for them having to participate in such nonsense with "Napoleon Dynamite and his sidekick, Pedro." MVP said he's officially in the Rumble. He said if he does nothing else in the Rumble, he's throwing Miz out. MVP walked toward the ring and said he might as well through Miz and Heder out right now. Big Show's music played just as MVP got to ringside. Miz and Show surrounded MVP. MVP went after Miz, but took a kick to the gut and a KO punch by Show. '
Heder said he and Show have the same agent, so he called him and said he should be on standby in case something went wrong. Heder said they should celebrate instead of DX. "All four of us!" he said. Johnson said he wanted no part of it. Heder said, "It's like the creation of this beautiful, beautiful friendship." He then booked DX vs. Show & Miz ("ShowMiz," of course). Heder jumped into Show's arms. Heder just gave Bob Barker a run for his money for being the best G.M. so far. Johnson has been a good sport and believable. Heder has been a great fit and a really effective heel. [c]
3 -- JOHN CENA & KOFI KINGSTON vs. CODY RHODES & TED DIBIASE
Cole announced during Cena's entrance that Cena has been entered in the Rumble. Cena got the Beatles scream from the girls when he took of his shirt. It was the type of screams that Kerry Von Erich and The Rock & Roll Express got in the 1980s. Cena got in some early offense, but the heels took over with a beatdown for three minutes. Cena hot-tagged Kingston who cleared the ring as they cut to a break at 4:00. [c]
The heels isolated Kofo as Cena led the crowd in cheering for a hot tag. At 9:00 Kingston hot-tagged Cena, who went to work on Rhodes as the crowd cheered. He went into the FU routine. Rhodes fought out of an Attitude Adjustment attempt and hit a side Russian leg sweep for a two count. Cena countered a bulldog attempt and hit the AttAdj. DiBiase made the save. Cena tagged in Kingston who surprised Rhodes with a high crossbody for the three count. Afterward, DiBiase helped Rhodes up, but Rhodes shoved him away in frustration and jumped out of the ring ahead of DiBiase.
WINNERS: Cena & Kingston in 11:00.
STAR RATING: ** -- Good basic tag match.
-Heder told Show & Miz to do what they do against DX and win. Hornswoggle showed up in DX gear. He mumbled at him. Heder told him to calm down. He asked Show what he's saying. Show said, "Nobody knows what he says." Hunter walked into the picture. He said that Hornswoggle is saying he doesn't like him very much. Hunter said Hornswoggle challenged Heder to a match tonight. Miz said nobody has any interest in seeing that. Hunter said nobody has any interest in anything he does. Hornswoggle bit at Show's finger when he pointed at him. Show asked Hunter if they got him his shots yet. Hunter said they should make the scheduled match a six-man tag. Heder said, "Uh, I'm sorry. What?!" Show and Miz agreed right away to it. Heder looked nervous and asked, "What just happened here?" [c]
4 -- GAIL KIM & EVE vs. MARYSE & ALICIA FOX
Gail hot-tagged Eve in at 2:00. The heels took over again. Eve took Fox off the top rope with an armbar flip move and held on for a submission win.
WINNER: Kim & Eve in 3:00.
-A video package aired on Steve Austin's guest role on "Chuck" next Monday in NBC.
-Lawler plugged the six-man tag main event. [c]
-Backstage Heder was breathing into a paperbag as Johnson admired Kelly Kelly's nails. Heder asked Johnson: "What am I doing here? How did I get into this?" Johnson asked how he got him into that spot. Heder told him to take his spot. He said he's done stunts before and he's supposed to be his friend. Johnson said they're not that close and they didn't even have any scenes in the movie together. Miz and Show walked up to Heder and told him to relax. Heder said, "I'm going to die." Show said that he and Miz are already clicking more than he did with his former partner. He said they'd do the heavy lifting and Heder could come in and polish them off. Johnson said whatever it is they're taking, they should cut the dose in half. Johnson said actors have stuntmen, so this is a mistake. Miz began saying the fashion on Miami Vice was a mistake. Heder said he's thinking this might work after all. They gave him a robe that said "The Flame" on the back. Miz said, "Think about it, you're house on fire ready to explore." Show said, "Nobody can extinguish The Flame!" Heder got excited about it and suggested they put pyro into his hand so he could throw fireworks. Show said that's not a good idea because Miz's hair could catch fire.
-Cole and Lawler excitedly talked about the Rumble PPV, less than two weeks away. They hyped the announced line-up so far.
-Backstage, McMahon told Hunter that he's no coward, despite Undertaker's claim. He said he might have to call out Taker next week. Hunter said: "What is it with you. It's not just you. It's the whole family, all the McMahons. You've all got to get in the last word. You just can't let things go." He said had he just behaved, Bret would have wondered off into the sunset and they'd have never heard from him again. He said now he's backed himself into a corner. He said since perception is reality, if he brought Bret on the back in an upcoming week, that'd make Bret a bigger star, which he doesn't want to do, but if he doesn't call him out, the whole world will know he's a coward. McMahon pondered and walked away. Michaels walked up to Hunter and asked if he was ready. Hunter said he is. As he was about to bring up the other subject, Hornswoggle walekd up and warmed up on a ladder. Hunter said what he wants to say is serious, so he'll talk to him about it later. Hunter told Michaels to carry Hornswoggle to the ring. Michaels said he's too heavy to carry. Hunter gave him a piggy back ride. Nice to see DX skip the merch plugs, gay jokes, cock jokes, and just general "drunk dad at the wedding" zaniness. Their tone this week overall is the best it's been yet, finding a good chemistry with Hornswoggle and mixing serious and comedy without going overboard.
-They showed Orton backstage. Cole said he's in action next. [c]
5 -- RANDY ORTON vs. CHRIS MASTERS
Sheamus walked out to watch the match, just as Orton did for his match earlier. Cole called Masters "very formidable," which translates to "he's going to lose." Masters managed to apply the Masterlock at 2:00. Orton reached the ropes. When Masters approached Orton afterward, he struck with a sudden RKO for the win.
WINNER: Orton in 3:00.
-Afterward, Sheamus nailed Orton with a pump kick. He put his foot over Orton's back and raised his arms. The crowd booed. Clearly WWE is establishing who the heel is in this match-up.
-Main event ring intros took place. Heder wore his feather sequined robe, blowing feathers rather than pyro at the camera lens. [c]
6 -- TRIPLE H & SHAWN MICHAELS & HORNSWOGGLE vs. MIZ & BIG SHOW & JON HEDER
The match was joined in progress at 58 minutes into the second hour.
Cole re-set the scene at the top of the hour, including Lawler pointing out that Heder from "Blades of Glory" and "Napoleon Dynamite" is in this match. Heder tagged in to take on Hornswoggle after Miz clotheslined him. Heder, the bravest man on Raw, took off his robe revealing standard wrestling trunks and a body that you'd expect. His waistband rose above his belly button. He kicked Hornswoggle in the chest. Hornswoggle came back and bit him on the butt. Triple H tagged in. Heder bailed out to the floor into Johnson's arms. He rolled away from Johnson and back into the ring for some reason. Hunter punched Heder, who took a nice flatback bump. Show entered, but Michaels gave him Sweet Chin Music. Show fell on top of Heder. Michaels kicked Miz off the ring apron. Hornswoggle tagged in and splashed Show on his back. Show rolled out of the ring. Hornswoggle covered Heder for the three count. As DX celebrated, Johnson helped Heder toward the back.
WINNER: DX & Hornswoggle in 6:00.
-Hunter told Michaels that he's been trying to tell him something all night long. He said they need to talk about this thing with he and Undertaker. He said he's going to have to figure another way to get that match because he doesn't think he's going to win the Rumble. "It's not going to work going after the championship, Shawn," he said. He paused and Michaels walked away, not wanting to hear it. Cena's music then played. Cena said "wait a second" four times. He said before things get out of control, he had a major announcement. He said it's been two years since he's been in a Rumble match, but he announcing he'll be in it this year. He said the last time he was in it, he won the whole thing. He said this year he's going to do it again. Hunter looekd to ringside and in walked The Big Show. Lawler said he might not realize the match is over. Show said he had news for Cena, Hunter, and Michaels. He said he's in the Rumble this year, too. He said it's a match designed for a giant like him.He kicked Hunter, headbutted Michaels and went after Cena. Cena punched Show and shoulder tackled him to the floor. DX threw Cena over the top rope. Cole said that would be an elimination in the Rumble. Hunter then tossed Michaels over the top. Hunter grabbed the mic and said is none of them are going to win the Rumble "because I am." Cole said it'll be every man for himself in the Rumble. "There are no friends! There are no teammates!"
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