Monday Night Raw – January 31, 2011 – Miz is Facing WHO at the PPV?

Monday Night Raw
Date: January 31, 2011
Location: Dunkin’ Donuts Center, Providence, Rhode Island
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler

We’re officially on the Road to Wrestlemania now with our Royal Rumble winner being Alberto Del Rio.  Tonight he’s making his selection for an opponent at Wrestlemania.  It’ll be interesting to see if that match stands up past the Elimination Chamber but still it’s fun to see.  Also we see who is next to face Miz which appears to be Cena.  This is one of the most exciting times of the year, so let’s get to it.

Edge vs. Miz tonight and there must be a winner due to the interference last week.

Here’s Alberto for the big announcement to start the show.  He brings out a Mariachi band (King: they need more cowbell) to play Alberto’s theme song.  He comes out in a sweet 2011 Mercedes which he bought as a celebration present to himself.  Alberto says he said he’d win the Rumble and that he told us so.  Ricardo repeats individual lines that Alberto says.  He says this Mariachi band only performs for the Mexican President and him.  They’re real music, not Justin Bieber.

Alberto picks the…sera?  I’m not sure what he said but it wasn’t picking a title.  Instead here’s Miz to hear the announcement himself.  It sounded like a moderate face pop for actually.  He congratulates Alberto and says that he’ll be champion at Mania while Edge will lose in the Elimination Chamber.  Miz heard Edge talking trash about Del Rio last night, including saying the cars are rentals.  Del Rio thinks this is a ploy, but here comes Edge to a big pop.

Edge says he doesn’t like or respect Del Rio.  He wouldn’t say those things behind his back though as he’d say them to his face instead.  Edge will be champion at Mania and is the Rated R Superstar, which was said with a Spanish accent.  Del Rio picks Edge and Edge drills him.  Miz and Riley bail so Del Rio can jump Edge.  He breaks the guitar over the arm of Edge and locks on the Cross Armbreaker which has Edge tapping it seems.  Injury angle perhaps?

Nexus vs. Santino/Kozlov for the titles next.

Back and we recap the previous segment and get an E-Mail.  Tonight there’s a Raw Rumble Match.  Seven people in it and the winner gets Miz at Elimination Chamber.  The other six go into the Chamber, I’d assume for the shot at Mania but that isn’t specified.  Tonight it’s Orton vs. Punk vs. Morrison vs. R-Truth vs. Sheamus vs. Jerry Lawler vs. John Cena.  So wait, Lawler is either getting a PPV Title match or will be in the Elimination Chamber?  That’s uh…not going to go well I don’t think.

Tag Titles: Santino Marella/Vladimir Kozlov vs. Michael McGillicutty/Husky Harris

Santino vs. Michael to start.  We talk about Santino almost pulling off the miracle last night which was mind blowing for various reasons.  Michael puts him in the corner to start but misses a Stinger Splash.  Off to Vladimir now who hammers away but gets caught in the knee to shift momentum.  Santino and Husky in now with Husky actually losing for a bit.

A cross body by Santino runs into more or less a wall though and Nexus controls again.  Neckbreaker by McGillicutty gets two and Santino is sent to the floor as we take a break.  Back with Michael getting two on Santino.  Santino finally breaks the momentum and it’s off to Harris and Kozlov, who actually gets a solid pop.  Everything breaks down and Santino gets a tag.  He gets the Cobra to Harris for the pin to retain at 9:12.

Rating: C. Not bad here but more or less completely average.  The ending kind of surprised me but with Kozlov and Santino being so popular at the moment it makes no sense to not keep the belts on them.  The match itself was fine but nothing special.  Just a TV tag match and that’s all it needed to be.

As the champions leave, Orton hits the ring and it’s an RKO to McGillicutty!  He hears voices and sets to punt Harris but Punk pops up to say don’t do it.  Otunga, Ryan and Punk stand on the stage as Orton is waiting in the ring.  It should be noted that Harris took the Cobra and has been down over three minutes now.  He’s on his knees with his head on the mat but hasn’t been up yet.  Now THAT is selling.

Punk says if you punt Harris there will be consequences.  After a long pause, he pulls back but then punts Harris anyway.  Orton runs through the crowd to avoid the beatdown.  Harris is out cold and that’s probably the last we’ll see of him for awhile.  Punk and Orton stare at each other as we go to a break.

Back with a clip of what we just saw and the announcers talking a bit.  Ted DiBiase and Maryse come out to criticize Jerry for hanging on too long.  Ted wants Jerry’s spot tonight.  In the jaw dropping moment of the night, MICHAEL COLE defends Jerry, saying that he’s a legend and Ted needs to chill.  Jerry says he’s been here for 18 years and has never had a match at Wrestlemania because his Road to Wrestlemania has always been under construction.  His road begins tonight with the Raw Rumble.

Ted hits him and runs so Jerry goes after him.  Ted hides behind Maryse, who slaps the heck out of Ted, likely breaking up with him.  Jerry drills him as well and is ready to fight.  Cole yells at him for trying to hog the spotlight but reminds him that Jerry can’t hit him.  I kind of hope they’re leading up to Cole vs. Lawler at Mania.

We get a video of someone walking into what looks like a shack but it’s way too dark to see.  There’s rain everywhere and you can’t see anything.  The date 2-21-11 pops up on screen, which is the day after Elimination Chamber.

Back in the arena and the Bellas are at ringside for this match.

Tyson Kidd vs. Daniel Bryan

 

No word on if this is a title match or not.  The Bellas are asked about the bet and they ask if Cole has ever seen Cruel Intentions.  If you haven’t seen it the two main characters bet that the main guy can’t sleep with a certain woman.  The Bellas are the focal point here and it’s not like it matters.  LeBell Lock ends it at 1:48.  No rating of course.  Gail and Bryan make out post match.  The Bellas come in and we get a catfight.

Edge vs. Miz is next.

Edge vs. The Miz

 

No entrances but we get big match intros.  Edge controls early with basic stuff.  Riley pulls Miz to the floor and Miz gets some shots into the arm.  Miz gets two on Edge as it occurs to me that the video could have been Sting.  Kind of fits and could set up to Mania.  I doubt it but it’s possible.  Anyway Miz throws on an armbar as we talk about the main event.  This goes on for a long time until Edge finally gets a rope for the break.

And now we’re right back to the armbar.  I love in ring psychology but there comes a point where it makes matches boring.  They both get big boots and both men are down.  Edge gets a flapjack with the bad arm and stays down for a bit because of it.  See, that’s how you sell an injury: have it affect your match.  Sunset flip gets two for Edge and a boot gets two for Miz.

Edgecution gets no cover as Edge sets for the spear.  Riley sends him into the buckle and….here’s Cena.  He’s up in the guest box and starts a “Miz is awful” chant.  That’s enough for the spear to end Miz at 8:50.  Cole calls Edge and Cena buddies.  I love the total lack of continuity in WWE.  Cole helps Miz out and yells at Riley about Cena.

Rating: D+. This was rather boring and that’s mainly due to the armbars.  They make perfect sense but at the same time they’re boring.  Cena getting involved makes perfect sense though and it doesn’t make Miz look that bad since he had Edge beat.  This was ok but it dragged way too much to give it a solid grade.

Steve Austin will be hosting Tough Enough.  Yeah that might get them some ratings.

Here’s Vickie to say that Edge’s title is in trouble as Edge will defend the title in a way that it has never been defended before.  It’s not specified what though.

Natalya/Eve Torres vs. Laycool

 

We get a clip of Laycool making up for their blunder last night.  Natalya vs. McCool to start.  Layla comes in and hides from Nattie.  She picks Layla up but can’t hold onto her.  Laycool hug and it’s back to the beating.  Off to the new champion who flat out rocks those gold shorts.  She however does not rock in the ring as this is looking bad already.  Standing moonsault gets two.  Michelle kicks Eve in the corner and DIAMOND DUST (called the Facelift) here by Layla ends Eve at 2:45.  No rating for a glorified comedy match but that ending was great.

Usos vs. Great Khali/Mark Henry

 

Khali dances a bit.  Matthews is out to replace King who is getting ready.  Josh: “Khali and Henry combine to weigh nearly 1000 pounds.  That’s as much as a mini-Cooper or the chick from Precious.”  The GM says that the Usos have no chance so this is now a dance off.  I like the brutal honesty there.

You know what?  I really like the brutal honesty there.  “This match is going to suck and we’re not going to waste your time with it.  Here’s something that’ll likely get a nice reaction.”  Cole dances too and the Usos are nothing special.  Take a wild guess who wins here.  The Usos wind up taking the monster finishers.

The 2-21-11 thing plays again.  That looks A LOT like Sting’s coat.

It’s the world premiere of the trailer for The Chaperone, which is HHH’s new movie.  HHH is a dad just out of prison that is trying to get to know his daughter again.  He acts as a chaperone on a field trip but is followed by some people that know him from his life of crime.  It’s an action-comedy but they seem to have a real problem figuring out which it wants to be rather than a hybrid.

Raw Rumble

 

This is a regular Royal Rumble but with only seven guys.  Morrison is first and we see the routine he did to get back into the ring last night.  That’s just insane.  He’ll be joined by Sheamus to start.  It’s over the top for eliminations.  We take a break before we start though.  Back and we’re told it’s Laycool/Ziggler vs. Kelly/Edge and the title is on the line.  Whoa.

90 second intervals here.  Morrison works the arm and tries to put Morrison out.  That gets him nowhere but the Irish Curse does.  He hits it as Cena is in at #3.  Cena puts Sheamus down and tries the FU on Morrison.  Naturally Morrison flips out of it and hits an enziguri to Cena and takes over.  Punk is the fourth man in.  Clothesline and bulldog in the corner to Cena puts him down.  All Punk so far.  Everyone is back up now and we pair off with Morrison/Punk and Cena/Sheamus.  Belly to belly puts Sheamus down.

Number five is R-Truth.  He takes down Cena and tosses Morrison over.  Morrison holds on and pulls Truth with him.  They both skin the cat (who thought that was a good name for it?) but Truth messes his up and looks like he’s a fish out of water.  FU is blocked on Punk and the next to last guy is Lawler.

Lawler puts everyone down and almost gets Punk out.  Sheamus saves him for some reason.  Wouldn’t he want Punk out?  Sheamus almost puts Lawler out but can’t quite do it.  Orton is last and Punk hides under the ring.  Orton I guess realized it as he goes under the ring.  He hasn’t been in the ring yet.  There’s Punk and the beating is on.  Both are back in the ring now and we’ve had no eliminations to this point.

Clothesline puts Punk out but Truth sneaks up on Randy and he’s out too!  Down to five as we take a break.  Back with the same five still in.  Cena wakes up and tries a double FU on Truth and Morrison.  He dumps Truth but Morrison hangs on.  Morrison pulls Cena to the apron and they slug it out with some great teases.  Sheamus charges but misses.  All three are on the apron here and only Lawler is left in the ring.  He’s down though.

Sheamus is back in as is Cena.  Morrison is still on the apron and tries to suplex Sheamus out.  He gets him up a few times but can’t slide in between the legs.  Sheamus drills him and he falls backwards but hangs on BY HIS FEET and does a sit up to get back in.  This man is not human.  He can’t be.  Morrison tries to get rid of Sheamus but can’t get him over.

Slingshot shoulder half kills Morrison and Cena grabs the STFU on Sheamus.  Morrison goes for Starship Pain and TOTALLY misses it.  That was sad looking.  Lawler tries to throw him out but Morrison gets his hands out and again saves himself.  Flash Kick puts Cena down and Morrison goes for Sheamus again.  This time though Morrison is sent to the apron and the Brogue Kick puts him out.

Lawler gets a dropkick to Cena the the former rapper is in trouble.  Sheamus breaks it up and has Cena reeling.  For no apparent reason he didn’t shove them both out but whatever.  Lawler comes after Sheamus again but Sheamus ducks and Lawler puts out Cena!  They look at each other and Sheamus tries a Brogue Kick.  Cena pulls the rope down and Lawler ducks.  Sheamus goes over and Lawler is the #1 contender at 15:20!

Rating: B-. Morrison is by far and away the highlight here as you would expect him to be.  The match itself was a decent battle royal with some good spots.  Lawler winning was kind of predictable but if they’re going to put him in this spot he had to win here as he couldn’t be in the Chamber.  Either way, not bad at all and it worked pretty well I thought.  Match of the night by far which isn’t saying much.

Overall Rating: C-. This wasn’t the worst Raw I’ve ever seen by far but it was really pretty boring.  Lawler was more or less the main focus here.  Not a lot was set up but we do know the two big Raw matches which is the main point I suppose.  The main event helped a bit but it definitely didn’t save the show.  Decent show but a letdown from the previous few weeks.  Until two weeks from now.

Results

Santino Marella/Vladimir Kozlov b. Michael McGillicutty/Husky Harris – Cobra to McGillicutty

Daniel Bryan b. Tyson Kidd – LeBell Lock

Great Khali/Mark Henry b. The Usos in a Dance Off

Jerry Lawler won the Raw Rumble

5 comments

  1. JGlass says:

    Not a great RAW, but that Rumble at the end more than made up for it. Morrison’s spots were great, John Cena looked fantastic, there was good Orton/Punk build-up, and I was happy as fuck to see Jerry win. I’m pretty excited for his match with Miz in three weeks.

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  2. Doug Crashin says:

    I can’t believe I missed that promo. That could’ve been a Sting OR an Undertaker one. Never in a million years would I have expected STING of all people sign a Legends deal or something of that nature with Vince. But as they always say in the wrestling business, never say never.

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  3. Kenny Powers says:

    Raw was kinda anticlimactic to me. Usually the Raw after the Rumble is one of the biggest shows of the year. The opening segment was fine, but I just don’t think enough people care about Alberto Del Rio to boo him like a main event heel. He isn’t on the Miz’s level yet.

    I enjoyed the main event and even though I’m surprised that the King is in another title match, I am glad to see this will lead to a Mania match. Overall the show wasn’t bad, just kind of lackluster.

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    klunderbunker Reply:

    I can live with Lawler being in another title match even on PPV. EC is very much like the Rumble: everything other than the namesake match is pure window dressing and is all bonus material. The show is sold on the Chamber matches and anything else that they get right is a bonus. I’m ok since it’s just a pit stop on the Road to Wrestlemania.

    [Reply]

  4. SoM says:

    JoMo’s missed spot was weak but it wasn’t his fault really. He wouldn’t be able to hit starship pain that close to the ropes.

    [Reply]

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