Wednesday, 24 September 2014

That RAW Recap 22.09.14

“I’m not dead!” shouted Dean Ambrose at the beginning of this week’s RAW. It was in reference to the over the top fashion in which he’d been written off TV five weeks earlier, having his head smashed through several blocks of allegedly solid concrete. His irreverent attitude towards the angle was the only sensible way to handle it, seeing as he’d returned with no signs of injury after filming a movie. That that’s his approach is a large part of the reasons he’s so popular.

Ambrose called out The Authority so that he could continue his eternal fight with former teammate Seth Rollins. Instead he was joined by John Cena. He was in the mood for a little Rollins bashing himself, as Rollins’s interference had caused his championship match the previous evening to end via disqualification. In Cena’s mind Rollins had denied him a guaranteed title win.

"Did I ever tell you about my father?"
Ambrose warned Cena, twice, not to get in his way. Cena responded by taking off his shirt (to squeals of joy from some of the ladies in attendance). Ambrose slipped off his jacket. Before their joint show of machismo could progress further The Authority wandered out. Triple H started announcing some matches but was cut off by Cena and Ambrose slipping from the ring and rushing up the aisle to get their hands on ‘Mr Money in the Bank’.

A brawl ensued. Rollins quickly made his way backstage with the faces in hot pursuit. Kane, Orton and the bosses were left looking confused at ringside. Rollins would ultimately make his getaway in a car with its keys handily left in the ignition. Someone’s lost an insurance claim there.

After a break Big Tripper announced Kane v Dean Ambrose and John Cena v Randy Orton. Ambrose v Kane was bad enough, it’s a match we’ve seen far too often this year. But throwing out Cena v Orton too? I can’t believe anyone in WWE genuinely thinks that’s a good idea at this point. They’ve had dozens of televised matches over the years and I can’t remember an audience caring about a single one. Cena v Kane and Orton v Ambrose would have been more appealing, and that’s with the overfamiliarity of Cena and Kane bouts taken into consideration.

The first match of the night saw Dolph Ziggler regain the Intercontinental championship from The Miz. They reused the finish of their match the night before, but with ‘The Show Off’ reversing Miz’s pin into one of his own, grabbing the tights for a turnabout is fair play moment. This marked the second time ‘The Awesome One’ had held the IC strap for just one day. It also marked the beginning of Ziggler’s third reign. I can only assume someone wants to get back to the approach of titles changing hands multiple times during feuds. I’m all for that. It makes things interesting and makes it clear the belt is something all involved want to have.

After Jack Swagger had submitted Bo Dallas (a competent affair) and Natalya had submitted Summer Rae (less competent but still very much an affair) we got Kane and Ambrose’s match. They wrestled for about eight minutes before Rollins appeared and caused a disqualification. Afterwards the former Shield lads fought with ‘The Lunatic Fringe’ gaining the upper hand. Rollins backed away from the ring, not wanting any part of a fight with Ambrose ready for him. Cena, for the record, was nowhere to be seen here, despite him starting the night by stating that all he wanted was to get his hands on Rollins.

Backstage ‘The Game’ told Rollins to stop starting fights and having The Authority finish them. Then Ambrose showed up, got taken out by Jamie Noble and security as Triple H looked on, and found himself locked in a room by Stephanie McMahon. I’ll be honest, I can think of worse fates than being trapped and being at Stephanie McMahon’s mercy.

The Usos teamed up with US champion Sheamus to face Goldust, Stardust and Cesaro. The two tag teams have faced off enough times to be relied upon for a good match whenever required and Sheamus and Cesaro had had the best match of the evening at Night of Champions the night before. Basically, this was designed to be a good match and it was. The good guys won after the Usos hit a super kick and splash combo on Goldy.

That was followed by the funniest moment of the show. In the back Rollins approached Orton and apologised for not fighting his own battles, promising a surprise for later in the show. Orton’s response: “Well… I do like surprises.”

Mark Henry apologised to the American people for his Night of Champions loss to Rusev. The Russians came out and offered Henry a rematch. He accepted and lost. At this point I think the only honourable thing for Henry to do is retire. He’s let the greatest nation in the universe down far too often.

Adam Rose and The Bunny defeated Slater Gator. The Bunny did not seem especially over and nobody seemed to be aware of the feud it’s had with Slater and O’Neil. Rose was the one who got the win for his team (as he should have been) with the Party Foul.

That was followed by Nikki Bella going all Brian Kendrick and demanding she be referred to as ‘The’ Nikki Bella. She also said Brie should drop the surname. This naturally ended in a shoving match, Brie Bryan gaining the upper hand and sending her sister sprawling from the ring. Nikki then lost a non-title match to AJ Lee as Paige sat on commentary saying a whole lot of nothing.

Orton v Cena was the main event. In fairness to WWE it was different from their (many) previous encounters because The Authority were in ‘The Viper’s’ corner and there was a blocky object covered with a black cloth near the announce desk. Y’know, exactly like the cloth that covered the cinder blocks that took out Ambrose.

"Oh hi, Kane!"
The match ended with a DQ when Cena put Orty in the STF and Kane and Rollins immediately interfered to break the hold. It was the second disqualification of the night and the third in two days. I’m not usually bothered by disqualification finishes if they’re done for a reason, which the Lesnar v Cena finish was. But I do think WWE went overboard here. If a pay-per-view main event ends with a DQ than a clean finish should go on last the following night. But hey, the RAW finish was done for a reason too so I suppose an argument can be made in its favour.

Orton, Kane and Rollins knocked Cena about a bit before taking him over to the announce desk. We were left to assume that the cloth was once again covering cinder blocks, but it wasn’t. Instead Kane whipped it away to reveal Dean Ambrose. No explanation for how Ambrose escaped from a sealed room was provided. We were left to assume he can teleport. He attacked all three Authority boys, eventually isolating Rollins in the ring. Before he could really lay into him Kane grabbed him for a choke slam. Cena made the save but it was too late: Rollins had escaped. He stood gloating in the crowd as the show went off the air.

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