Opening Segment: The Authority
Triple H and Stephanie open the show. which is what I thought would open the show. They talk about Money In The Bank, put over Seth Rollins and his winning the briefcase. They mention Daniel Bryan’s injury, very smug just to put over how evil they are. Then they introduce John Cena, the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion. John Cena comes out wearing the belts as a necklace, and The Authority are very nice to him, which he finds strange.
The brand new cover to the new WWE2K game is revealed with John Cena on the cover (it actually looks good). John Cena and Triple H then square off on the mic, in a bit that was actually really funny with Triple H mocking Cena and his accent. The niceness is over as they announced a Fatal Four Way match for the Titles at Battlegrounds. And tonight John Cena will team with Roman Reigns against Randy Orton and Kane, and yes they are the three men in the Fatal Four Way. Solid opening, I really enjoyed it to be honest. John Cena and Triple H worked great against each other on the mic.
Seth Rollins vs. Rob Van Dam
After The Authority and John Cena segment, Seth Rollins came out. Your new Mr. Money In The Bank, against one of his opponent’s from the PPV RVD. This was a great match opener, and a good way to get the show going. They set the pace with a fast match, and Van Dam had the upper hand a lot during the match showing frustration from Rollins.
But Rollins managed to come back and hit the curb stomp for the win. But his celebrations didn’t last long as Dean Ambrose appeared on the titantron speaking from one scumbag to another and told Rollins that his briefcase is dynamite because whenever he wants to cash it in, he will be there to stop him. Rollins was not happy.
Rusev and Lana get confronted by Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter
Something we have all been waiting for, the Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter face turn to go against Rusev and the Ravishing Russian Lana. Rusev and Lana came out first and the crowd was hot chanting USA USA USA and Lana was not happy. After their usual spill, We The People theme hit and out came Swagger and Colter to lots of cheers.
Zeb confronted the pair with a great little speech, and it was on! The crowd were actually chanting for Swagger! It was such a great segment, and Lana and Rusev were not happy! This is going to be a great feud, the two men can go at it in matches and they both have awesome mouth pieces. The crowd loved it, and it was about time to see the face turn, the build up was great.
The Usos and Sheamus vs. The Wyatt Family
A rematch of sorts, with the Usos and Harper and Rowan with Sheamus and Bray who were in the Main Event at the PPV. I do like Sheamus and the Usos together, they have a great chemistry as a team. This was a really good match, great show from all of these guys. The Wyatt’s dominated over Sheamus and when the Uso’s got in the crowd was hot. It looked at if the Usos may win, but the Wyatts with Harper wound up getting the victory. The finish was intense, it was really well built up.
A side note too, NXT posted on Facebook that Viktor and Konnor (The NXT Tag Champions) were watching the match backstage. Any week now they will make their main roster debut and I bet they will destroy the Usos during that debut.
Nikki Bella had a confrontation with Stephanie McMahon backstage who once again put her in a handicap match. Bo Dallas came out to get everyone to give a minute of silence to the fallen, Daniel Bryan and Bad News Barrett. Bo did his pose and remained silent for the minute, the commentary team were hilarious during this. They ran a video package of Bo and his bit with Daniel Bryan during the preshow before the PPV.
Nikki Bella vs. The Funkadactyls
Cameron took on Nikki first, and she did not fare well. Nikki was running rings around her with her moves, Cameron than tagged Naomi in who hit some strong moves on Nikki and won the match. I really wanted to see more between Nikki and Naomi but they had a job to do, and Stephanie would have ordered them to make quick work (I wish they would have shown that backstage). Post match Naomi seemed to feel bad for having to hurt Nikki and Cameron was annoyed she didn’t get the pin and the pair verbally fought and pushed each other. The end of these two is near.
There is a build up for Stephanie vs. Brie, perhaps at Summerslam? I can’t wait!
The announcers made the announcement that Bad News Barrett is injured badly and his shoulder does require surgery. So the IC Title is now vacated and a Battle Royal at Battlegrounds will determine the new Champion. All the best to Barrett, I hope they do use him on TV while he recovers, his gimmick definitely allows it.
Kofi Kingston vs. Cesaro w/Paul Heyman
Usual prematch build up from Heyman and sold that Cesaro will win the Battle Royal at Battlegrounds. This was a good match, Kofi definitely got a lot of offense on Cesaro and Heyman was not happy. There was a great point in the match where Kofi was down and Cesaro signaled for the swing, the crowd erupted and he gave a smirk and stopped. More heel behaviour which is great, the swing is a big babyface move. We had an ad break and once we returned we found out Kofi won …. I will still not use the app, it’s stupid.
Post match Cesaro and Heyman were not happy and a brutal post match beat down began. Cesaro tore into Kofi, he threw him over the announce table and that actually took Michael Cole out for a little bit. The brutal beat down definitely gave Cesaro more heat, the fans love him because he’s so talented but he needed to embrace being a villain.
Vince McMahondow (Damien Sandow) vs. The Great Khali
I think we are getting a faceturn from Damien Sandow finally. He came out dressed as Vinnie Mac, and he did everything perfectly, from the strut to the talk. He did make mention of WWE treating himself Sandow poorly. This then caused Stephanie to appear via titantron, and she said he gets to go up against a giant. Khali came out and did the big chop and Sandow was out. Both men will be in the Battle Royal. I really hope Sandow gets a solid push as a face, he really deserves it.
Two Returning Champions Returned
Through the show it was being built up that a former Champion was returning. The word was Chris Jericho or The Miz, well we got both. First The Miz returned, he’s definitely a heel. He talked about being a movie star and all that, then Jericho’s music hit and we all got majorly excited! Yes, Y2J is here to save us. After some insults from The Miz, Jericho hit him with the codebreaker. Before he could even get out some words, the screen went black and The Wyatts appeared. The crowd chanted ‘This is awesome” – and it was because the prospect of a Bray Wyatt/Jericho feud is just amazing! They did the beat down on Jericho and he got Sister Abigail. I really hope we get a Bray/Jericho match at Battlegrounds or Summerslam, they will tear the house down!
Dolph Ziggler vs. Fandago w/Layla
This was a short match, a bit of back and forth with Layla and Fandango even kissing mid match. But then Summer Rae came out and made out with Ziggler, and then Ziggler planted one on Summer. Fandago was confused and upset and Layla was not impressed. This was an odd but funny little segment, I guess they need something for Summer and Ziggler does work well with someone by his side. Whether they will keep this pairing, we will see, they have worked house shows together.
Goldust and Stardust vs. RybAxel
A rematch from last night and Axel is back to his normal trunks. This was all about Stardust, and everyone does love this! This team is here to stay for sure, and Cody Rhodes is loving playing this character. It really suits him and I wonder why they didn’t think of this sooner. The match was really good, everyone got their fair turn. I hope both teams get to face others, so we can see growth for them both.
Stardust pulled off a fresh move and scored the win. It was a lot of fun, and I really enjoyed it. I hope they get some time on Smackdown, I want them all the time!
WWE Diva’s Title Match Paige (c) vs. AJ Lee
I knew something was up when Paige came out to talk, putting herself over, saying for three months she has shown she should be there. Then the music we have all been waiting to hear hit, AJ LEE is back! I knew AJ would return at any time and no one would know when. And I was right, and the crowd was all for it. She got on the mic and congratulated Paige, and Paige was sure AJ was tricking her. We definitely saw a swerve here, AJ returning as a face and Paige becoming heel. Which I love because AJ should be a face and Paige will make an amazing heel, she has a vicious streak that I can’t wait to see.
Paige granted AJ her rematch and Paige tore into AJ to start with, Paige even screamed that it was her ring now. No sooner had she said that, AJ got the pin and won back her title. I hope we see a long feud between these two, hell put them in a cage match at Summerslam or something! I am happy to see AJ back, and she seemed thrilled to be back. Side note the crowd did chant CM Punk, and AJ was sporting a nice rock on her marriage finger. Congrats to AJ and Punk, and welcome back girl!
John Cena/Roman Reigns vs. Kane/Randy Orton
Main Event time, with Triple H watching from ringside. This was a really good match, great action and we saw Reigns take a lot of the beating. Triple H was all for his two boys taking the beating to Reigns. And any time he had the upper hand they tore him down. He eventually got Cena seen, and he cleaned house. Reigns and Orton went at it (yes you could see his big gash with staples and props to him for working) and they ended up at the back, which saw Kane get to Cena and deliver the tombstone. Cena was knocked out, and Triple H got in the ring (yes there was a DQ by this point) and checked on Cena, then he called for someone. That someone was Rollins with the briefcase, and the ref was hesitant to start a match for Rollins.
When it looked like we might hear a bell, the crowd erupted and yes Dean Amrbose (with a taped up shoulder) came out and put a stop to things. The pair wound up fighting through the crowd, and Triple H called the ref an idiot (I giggled). Reigns came back in the ring, and Triple H and Reigns had a massive stare off. I am calling it, Reigns vs. Triple H at Summerslam. Before anyone wants to bitch and moan about Triple H, he will put Reigns over.
This was a fantastic Raw, a great show to make up for the disappointing ending to MITB. We are now in the path to Summerslam and we can already see where some things will be heading. There are new directions for a lot of people, and the potential is there for WWE to book an amazing Summerslam and to have a great program leading up to it. I am expecting anywhere between now and the Raw after Battlegrounds for Brock Lesner to show up. I hope they don’t announce it, just surprise us.
Overall Rating: A