Monday Night Raw – July 2, 2012: Night of 1000 Yes’es

Monday Night Raw
Date: July 2, 2012
Location: Laredo Energy Arena
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler

We’re in the second half of the year now with Raw again. We have four MITB contestants so far and there’s a rumor of a fifth showing up. I believe it’ll be a former champion but it’s hard to say given how this company keeps its stipulations straight. Lesnar is supposed to be here tonight too so we’ll get more of him vs. HHH. This is one of those shows that is going to be used to build towards the PPV. Let’s get to it.

After more technical difficulties, here’s Cena to open things up. He talks about how last week was his crash course in MITB because you never know when someone is going to come and break things up. He’ll win the case and the title and all the stuff you would expect him to say. Cue Bryan chanting YES. Cena: “See? Even Bryan agrees with me.” Bryan says he’ll win the title at MITB so Cena won’t be the next champion.

Cue Punk who says he disagrees with Bryan’s claim that he’ll win. He asks people if they disagree with Bryan, getting a lot of YES chants. For some reason only Cena has had theme music so far. Punk says that Bryan’s ex-girlfriend will be counting the shoulders down, and then it’s Punk vs. Cena all over again. Cue Jericho (with music) who says he’s tired of people stealing his catchphrases. Bryan cuts him off and is told to shut up as only Jericho can say it.

Jericho welcomes us to Raw Is Jericho and says that after tonight no one will evvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvver be the same again. He says he’ll win MITB and dares anyone to come out and say otherwise, and of course he’s Kane. Kane says otherwise in something that made me chuckle. Cue Big Show and it’s a big brawl. Kane beats on Jericho and Cena goes after Big Show while Bryan and Punk are both going to the floor. Kane goes after Big Show but Show knocks everyone down.

David Otunga/Cody Rhodes/Prime Time Players vs. Kofi Kingston/R-Truth/Christian/Santino Marella

Christiana nd Young start things off and a middle rope missile dropkick gets two for the Canadian. Off to Truth for his first action in months after a broken foot. Young tries a right hand but gets gyrated at instead. Off to Kofi who hits a middle rope shoulder for two. Boom Drop is broken up by Titus who pulls Darren to the floor. Kofi dives onto Titus but gets clotheslined down by Young as everything breaks down.

We take a break and come back with Cody holding Kofi in a surfboard. AW is mic’d up now for some reason. Titus comes in and slams Kofi for two. Kofi gets in a shot and it’s off to Santino vs. Otunga. Santino hits that quick suplex and a Stunner for two. Everything breaks down again and the Prime Time Players walk off. Santino hits his usual and Cody walks out on Otunga. Cue Brodus Clay of all people as Santino loads up the Cobra. Otunga keeps trying to run but gets thrown into the Cobra for the pin at 6:24. Too short to rate given what we saw but this was organized chaos at its best.

Otunga takes a bunch of finishers post match and we get a big dance party.

Teddy (in charge tonight) is dancing in the back when Alberto and Ricardo come in. Alberto earned his one on one title match and he wants it by Jorge. The Board has said that Alberto gets his title match at MITB but tonight, Alberto has a surprise opponent.

Stephanie talks about her dad getting ready for the 99 Rumble. It was basically a Rocky parody mixed with a way to show off that Vince was in great shape.

Alberto Del Rio vs. ???

Cole talks about how the car was driven here from Alberto’s home near Mexico City. That makes me wonder: how does he get these cars everywhere? Does he have a big fleet of people driving/transporting them all over the country? If so….that’s kind of awesome. The fans GO OFF on Alberto with some Spanish swearing. Here’s the opponent.

Alberto Del Rio vs. Sin Cara

Think Cara is popular in south Texas? Cole calls Mexican wrestlers lucha libres. Mike Tenay he is not. Del Rio jumps Cara as he comes into the ring and goes insane on him. The bell hasn’t rung yet. Del Rio destroys Cara on the floor and puts him in the armbreaker so Cara taps. There was no match.

Bryan is in the back and steals a flower from a random bouquet. He comes up to AJ and apologizes, even though AJ has Punk X’s on his hands. She says that’s sweet and of course has nothing to do with the title match at the PPV. Tonight she’s going to win and run into the arms of her soul mate. She destroys the flower and leaves.

Heyman is live via satellite instead of Lesnar being here.

There’s a 20 man battle royal tomorrow on Smackdown. The winner is next week’s GM of Smackdown. Ok then.

After a recap of the Heyman/HHH challenge to Lesnar, we’re told by Heyman that Brock will deliver his answer to HHH in person at the 1000th Raw. Lesnar wants to face HHH at Summerslam but not for the reasons people thing. HHH will do it because he needs money for the lawsuit. Also, it’s his exit strategy for his career, because after this HHH will never be able to wrestle again. After Summerslam, he can be the executive that everyone says went down in a blaze of glory.

Kane vs. Big Show later on in a No DQ match. Heaven help me.

Vickie Guerrero/Dolph Ziggler vs. Sheamus/AJ

This looks odd on paper but when you think about it all of the connections are there. The guys start us off after Sheamus puts AJ on the apron. Dolph dropkicks him down but gets launched into the air soon thereafter. A running ax handle gets two for the champ but Dolph takes him down into a chinlock. Sheamus breaks that up and hits White Noise. He loads up the Brogue Kick but Dolph tags Vickie before it can hit. Sheamus kicks his head off to send him to the floor and AJ comes in. Shining Wizard kills Vickie at 3:27.

Rating: C-. This was VERY short but DANG that Shining Wizard was awesome. AJ continues to be insane but it looks like we’re heading up to the payoff at MITB which is the right play. This was barely long enough to grade and I’m not sure what the point was in basically destroying Ziggler like that. Still though, that Shining Wizard was awesome.

AJ does the YES chant and heads to the back. She finds Punk who is on the phone with his sister. He missed the match and AJ is crushed.

We get a video of Slater’s destruction at the hands of old people, leading to this.

Heath Slater vs. Doink The Clown

This is basically a squash with Slater hitting his spinning sleeper mat slam (didn’t that have a name?) for the pin at 1:20.

Post match, here’s DDP to a BIG reaction and a Diamond Cutter.

Video on John Cena and Alicia Fox visiting sick/injured troops.

Kane vs. Big Show

This is No DQ. Show controls to start and sends Kane to the floor. He pulls Kane up from the floor BY HIS HEAD, onlyt o knocks Kane back to the floor again. Show misses a charge into the barricade but he throws Kane into the steps to take over. They fight over a chokeslam onto the announce table but Show superkicks him down instead. Show brings a chair in but walks into a DDT for two. The top rope clothesline misses but Kane grabs the chair. Show spears him down and chokeslams Kane onto the chair for the pin at 3:44.

Rating: D+. This was probably the best possible idea for them: keep things short. This wasn’t horrible but I’m not sure what the point of the stipulation was. It came out of nowhere, but to be fair it probably made the match as watchable as it was. These two have never had good chemistry together so keeping it short was probably their best option.

Teddy runs into Eve in the back and she sucks up to him. Teddy gives her a nametag in a funny bit. She rips it up and runs into AJ, telling her to leave the mind games to the big girls and telling AJ to go sit in the corner and cry. AJ wants to know who Eve is going to brown nose next. Eve will do anything to get attention, so AJ says she’ll show everyone how to do just that.

DX invading WCW was a big deal as well. This one actually was.

Tyson Kidd vs. Tensai

Tensai takes him into the corner and fires off the headbutts but misses a charge. Kidd rolls him up……AND GETS THE PIN AT 20 SECONDS???? WOW.

Tensai beats up Sakamoto post match.

Jericho and Bryan debate jackets and a catchphrase duel breaks out. YES vs. EVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVER is hilarious.

Punk tells Cena to follow his lead out there.

Tensai destroys Kidd in the locker room.

Chris Jericho/Daniel Bryan vs. CM Punk/John Cena

Punk and Bryan start things off. They speed things up of course and Punk takes control. He sends Bryan into the corner and it’s a double tag. Cena dominates Jericho as he is known to do, knocking him off the apron as we take a break. Back with Jericho getting two on Cena and taunting him for not being able to tag Punk. The Lionsault misses but Bryan breaks up the tag again.

The corner dropkick gets two for Bryan and it’s off to Jericho again. The dueling chants begin but Jericho blocks the fisherman’s suplex. The AA is countered into a DDT but Cena fires Jericho into the corner to put both guys down. There’s the diving tag to Punk, who comes in with a springboard clothesline to take over on the fresh Bryan. Powerslam gets two and Bryan gets put in the Vice. Jericho FINALLY makes a save but Cena fights him up the aisle and into the back.

Punk and Bryan are the legal guys left, as well as the only two still in the ring. Bryan moonsaults out of the corner but gets caught in a sunset flip for two. Bryan starts firing off the kicks and a big one to the head gets two. Bryan goes up but gets superplexed down for another two. And here’s AJ to skip around the ring. No one looks at her so she gets on the apron as Bryan fires off kicks to Punk.

No one looks at her still so she gets down as the guys hit cross bodies at the same time. AJ goes under the ring and pulls out….a table? She sets it up at ringside and very slowly climbs the steps. AJ goes up top but Bryan gets in front of the table. Punk gets up on the ropes to stop her as well, so she kisses him. Then she shoves him through Bryan through the table and starts a YES chant. The match ends at we’ll say 17:30.

Rating: B. The match was great and while the ending was confusing, it’s certainly intriguing. This certainly keeps things interesting as she still hasn’t picked anyone. She’s the most interesting character in the company right now by far, because in short you don’t know what she (AJ for you idiots out there) is going to do next. Good ending to a good match.

Overall Rating: C. The first hour was similar to having a blind monk with Parkinson’s Disease brand me with an iron while Chinese torture masters ripped out my fingernails. The second hour was better, to the point where I was really getting into things before the show ended. Kidd pulling off that upset was the perfect move as it gives him even more momentum going into the PPV. In short, very good second hour, pretty bad first hour.

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