Monday Night Raw
Date: May 23, 2011
Location: Rose Garden, Portland, Oregon
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, Josh Matthews
We’re past Over the Limit and after another Cena torture porn movie he’s still WWE Champion. Also Jerry Lawler finally got his revenge on Cole in a humiliating defeat. Tonight we’ll start building towards Capitol Punishment in four weeks. It should be interesting to see where we go from here as it seems a lot of feuds wrapped up last night. Let’s get to it.
An in memory of Randy Savage graphic opens us up.
Theme song hits.
Here’s Lawler who says that the long national nightmare is over because Michael Cole has been beaten. He said he had an ace up his sleeve last night. Actually he had a Hart up his sleeve, and here’s the Hitman! Bret says he’s always respected Jerry over the years as a competitor despite not always seeing things the same way. He had no respect for Michael Cole though so he as glad to help him taste the agony of “de-feet”.
R-Truth of all people comes out to talk to Bret. He says Bret must be a 90 time WWE Champion and wants Bret to ask him how many championship matches he’s had. That would be zero because he didn’t care about the little Jimmys like Bret did. He asks if there’s something he can give to the fans and asks to take Bret’s shades to give to the fans.
Truth finds a Little Jimmy in the front row and gives him the glasses. “I’m a good R-Truth now.” Now he thinks he should be next in line for a WWE Championship match but he isn’t. Truth takes the glasses back and goes to see Bret again. It’s about wins and losses, not giving the fans what they want. He put out John Morrison and he beat Rey last night but now he needs to beat on a Hall of Famer.
Bret says go ahead and try it but he got championship matches because he’s the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be. Truth doesn’t get championship matches because he’s a freaking lunatic. Truth doesn’t like that but here’s Cena before we see what he says next. Cena limps out and is clearly in pain. It’s a mostly pro-Cena crowd tonight.
Cena chats with Bret for a bit and now it’s time to talk to the resident lunatic. Cena says he and Truth used to be cool but now he lost his mind. Truth: “Used to? Used to is a rooster from Brewster.” Well ok then. This thing Truth has been on is all about Cena apparently. The people make it all about him. Cena says that Truth is wrong and that he makes it all about the people.
Truth says that it’s all about Cena and how he has to get the Cena shirt, the Cena wristbands, go see the new Cena movie, HE WANTS HIS SON BACK! It’s all about him now and he isn’t going to feel right until he gets his WWE Title match. Cena says he’s a bit broken up from last night but it’s about time someone knocked some sense into Truth. An E-Mail stops that though because the GM isn’t sure about Truth. The main event is Truth/Punk vs. Rey/Cena with Bret as referee. Bret gives the kid the sunglasses in a nice touch.
Show and Kane are sitting on a nice car and Show says that they’re going to be in a pack tonight, I think talking about Nexus. Ricardo comes up and yells in Spanish so Show shoves him down. Alberto comes up and yells in Spanish too. The big guys actually leave as Alberto rambles more in Spanish.
Tag Titles: Big Show/Kane vs. David Otunga/Michael McGillicutty
I don’t get why these two didn’t have the tag title shot last night since they won last week. Punk has boots up to his thighs that are white/yellow and look a bit odd. He sits in on commentary here. Kane and Otunga start us off and David heads to the floor to avoids a seated dropkick. A small chase starts but Otunga misses an elbow drop as Kane fakes him out.
Show comes in to a big pop and here’s Michael as well. Show sends him to the floor with ease as we take a break. Back with Nexus working over Kane as Punk says he doesn’t care which Nexus team wins the titles. Orunga gets a neckbreaker on Kane for two. Show comes in soon thereafter and the beatdown is on. Punk talks about how everything is going to be ok and Ryan tries to come in. Kane takes him down but Punk says he has faith and kicks Show in the head. A double DDT to Show and we have new champions at 8:54 total.
Rating: C. Not a bad match here and it’s probably a good thing to see the giants lose the titles. They can only go so far with the titles before things get really boring with them. Nexus needed something to go with here and the tag titles tend to be the first thing you’re given to get something established.
Back with a video of Orton at a Wal-Mart signing That’s What I Am DVDs. Not as bad a movie as I was expecting even though he was in it less than five minutes.
Big Show and Kane are asked about frustration and Show is all ticked off. Alberto for some reason Slaps him in the face and runs off. The camera goes down and when we find them Alberto’s car is on Show’s leg! Kane shouts at everyone and Ricardo backs the car off. Show screams a lot as medics arrive. Show tries to get up but falls right back down.
Back and Big Show still tries to stand, this time getting over to something to lean on. He won’t sit on a stretcher and looks like he’s going to try to walk it off.
Jack Swagger vs. Evan Bourne
Swagger misses a shot in the corner and Bourne snaps off a rana. And there goes that momentum as he runs into a big boot as Swagger takes over. Off to an armbar but the Vader Bomb misses. Bourne gets some kicks in but can’t get anywhere with it. One is caught into an ankle lock but Bourne gets out again. Another rana attempts is reversed into a HUGE gutwrecnch powerbomb to end this at 2:10. That impact was awesome.
Post match Bourne is up already and gets a kick to the head of Swagger to send him to the floor in a heap.
Cole is walking around in the back and walks past the Divas, offering Eve a handshake. She sticks her foot in his face instead. He’s up next.
Rock’s new movie has done incredibly well.
Here’s Cole and he asks for our attention but then says he doesn’t deserve it. He wants to apologize to everyone from Jerry to Matthews to Justin Roberts to Mark Yeaton to the fans in Portland to the people all over the WWE Universe. He just wants to come home and do commentary on Raw. He wants to come back with no Cole Mine and no more matches but just one more chance.
Jerry says thanks for that and thanks for giving him a picture for this year’s Christmas card, which is Cole having Jerry’s foot in his mouth. The fans keep chanting You Suck Toes. Jerry also hands him a box of Altoids which Cole accepts. They offer him a chair but here’s Miz as Cole sits down.
Miz says there is only one reason why he didn’t win the WWE Championship last night, and that reason is Alex Riley. This isn’t the first time Riley has failed either as he wasn’t at the steel cage match, he cost Miz the title three weeks ago because they dropped the belt and then last night he had the cell phone fall on the ground. Miz wants one more chance at Cena in a one on one match with Alex Riley barred from ringside. He isn’t going to leave the ring until he gets an answer either.
There’s an E-Mail and the GM denies the request. Miz is done with Cena because he lost against last night. Riley points out that it wasn’t him that quit and Miz slaps him. Miz goes off on Riley and fires him and the fight is on! Riley is destroying Miz, ripping the clothes off of him and throwing him onto the announce table. Riley beats Miz up and we actually get a big Riley chant! Miz is almost out. Riley leaves Miz laying in the middle of the ring in one of the better face turns I’ve seen in a good while.
Melina/Maryse/Bella Twins vs. Eve Torres/Kelly Kelly/Beth Phoenix/Gail Kim
Cole continues to try to be different tonight, saying Miz might have had that coming to him and praising the Divas, enjoying the chance to call the match. A Bella (announcers aren’t sure either) vs. Kelly to start. And here’s Kharma maybe 10 seconds into it to a nice pop.
Beth rallies the troops to stare down Kharma who walks to the ring anyway. She climbs up to the apron and climbs in, not really focusing on anyone. The Divas surround her and it’s a weird staredown moment. Kharma sticks her arms out and her hands start shaking. She gets on her knees and something is censored out. Kharma starts crying with her lips quivering. She’s rocking back and forth a bit and shaking her head. She’s saying something but we can’t hear it. We go to a break with her more or less having a breakdown in the middle of the ring.
Back and we see a clip of Kharma’s breakdown again.
We get a clip of Extreme Rules where Kofi won the US Title back.
Drew McIntyre vs. Kofi Kingston
Non-Title here. Drew has a ton of pyro now. Drew is moving out there tonight as they have a very fast paced start but Kofi can’t get over Drew on a leapfrog and Drew works on the knee. Figure Four on the post as this has been all Drew other than some nice speed moves by Kofi. Kofi kicks him off though and manages the Boom Drop on one good leg.
He can’t even attempt Trouble in Paradise though and collapses, allowing Drew to get a kick to the chest for two. Drew tries a knee crusher which Kofi half counters into a rana position, only for Drew to powerbomb him down for a long two. Into the corner but Kofi pulls SOS out of nowhere for the surprise pin at 4:28. Vickie and Ziggler are shown watching. Dolph is blonde again.
Rating: C+. I liked this match with Drew having control due to the bad knee and Kofi having to fight from behind here the entire time. The knee stuff was good with Drew being all aggressive, but he lost again which doesn’t really help him all that much at the end of the day. Good to see him on TV again though.
We get a dream sequence of all three commentators imagining what would happen if President Obama had a press conference about Capitol Punishment. They’ve asked Congress, the Washington Nationals to the forest reserve to the PPV.
Nexus celebrates their win and Punk says watch what he’s about to do. Main event is up next.
Alberto says he had nothing to do with Show’s injury and blames Ricardo for it.
It’s time for what a lot of people have been asking for all night: the Randy Savage tribute. A voiceover talks about how awesome his career was and how when everyone was being flamboyant he was better at it than anyone. Set to Pomp and Circumstance we talk about his matches with Hogan, the Mania 3 match, Slim Jim, the fans imitating him (but never being able to duplicate him).
A barrage of Savage promos set up a highlight reel set to a sad song about setting someone apart and being a shame to be apart. There’s a focus on his relationship with Liz and the clips are mostly from his face runs. They’re showing things in sets here, such as his robes and then a bunch of shots of his elbows and finally the in memory graphic as he gets a standing ovation and a loud Macho Man chant. Very nicely done.
John Cena/Rey Mysterio vs. R-Truth/CM Punk
Bret is referee here. Punk has pink tights with stars on them like Savage had at Mania 4 where he won his first WWF Title. Cena and Truth to start with Cena sending him to the floor as we take a break. Back with Punk in control, ramming in elbows in the corner. Cena speeds things up a bit and Punk hides behind Bret in a funny spot. Truth comes in and takes over on Cena with some basic stuff for two.
Back off to Punk and I can’t help but smile at the tights. Punk hits Bret’s floatover Russian Legsweep and it’s the TWO MOVES OF DOOM! Suplex gets two and it’s off to Truth again who gets in Bret’s face. Punk adds a backbreaker but Cena reverses a Sharpshooter into an STF attempt. Punk loads him up for the GTS but Cena counters into a DDT and both guys are down.
Rey comes in and everything breaks down quickly. Cena falls down because of bad ribs and Truth shouts how do you like me now? Rey dropkicks Truth in the back and sets for the 619. Bret drills Punk and adds a Sharpshooter and Rey drops a dime on Punk’s head for the pin at 9:48. Cena jumps in the air with a leap that would make Orton jealous.
Rating: C. Just a main event tag match here but at the same time it was kind of a mess. Not bad to be sure but I’m really not sure what this accomplishes other than a feel good moment I guess. It was like they weren’t sure what to do here so they did a modified comedy match. Not bad, but really nothing special at all.
Overall Rating: B-. This was a hard one to grade here. The show was certainly eventful but the lack of wrestling hurts it. This was far more of a show about resetting a lot of things which is something they really had to do after last night and they did a good job of that, but the lack of wrestling got in the way here. The Savage tribute was well done and needed and I’m very glad we got one. The title change was also good and Kharma’s breakdown is something worth keeping an eye on, but overall I wasn’t buying into the whole show. Good, but certainly not epic or great. It got stuff done though, which was the idea.
David Otunga/Michael McGillicutty b. Kane/Big Show – Double DDT to Big Show
Jack Swagger b. Evan Bourne – Gutwrench Powerbomb
Melina/Maryse/Bella Twins vs. Eve Torries/Kelly Kelly/Beth Phoenix/Gail Kim went to a no contest when Kharma interfered
Kofi Kingston b. Drew McIntyre – SOS
John Cena/Rey Mysterio b. CM Punk/R-Truth – Springboard legdrop to Punk