Monday Night Raw – July 30, 2012: This Show Makes Me Need A Nap

Monday Night Raw
Date: July 30, 2012
Location: US Bank Arena, Cincinnati, Ohio
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler

This is the interesting show as we’re still at three hours, but now we don’t have the legends or the big stuff to fill in the card. We do however have the beginning of Punk’s heel reign and likely the announcement of his opponent (named John Cena) for Summerslam. This should be an interesting show but it’s hard to say where it’ll go. I do expect a rise in TOUTING IT OUT BABY! Let’s get to it.

We open with people still coming into the arena. Apparently there was a pyro issue before the show and a fire broke out. No one was injured but part of the Tron was on fire. No one was hurt which is the important thing.

We get a video from Raw 1000 which we’ve seen twice on WWE TV already. That’s ok though as we haven’t seen it on Raw yet and it’s a cool look back.

Here’s Punk to open the show and it sounds like a mixed reaction to me. Nope there are the boos. Punk talks about how everyone wants a Wrestlemania moment, but he had a Raw moment that was bigger than most people’s Mania moments. He’ll explain his actions in a bit but he wants to talk about how Raw 1000 went off the air. When the show was ending last week, Jerry Lawler said CM Punk has turned his back on the WWE Universe. That doesn’t sit well with Punk so he goes and sits on the announce desk in front of Lawler.

Punk talks about how he’s used to over the top commentary but he doesn’t get this one. If anything, it was Lawler who turned on CM Punk. Rock isn’t the WWE Universe but rather one person. Rock is a delusional movie star who showed the WWE Champion a lack of respect. Last week when Rock was doing his thing with Daniel Bryan, Rock completely ignored Punk which is disrespectful. Once Rock was talking to Punk, it was like Rock was lowering himself to do it. Then later in the night, Rock ran in and tried to make everything about him.

This isn’t ballet but rather the WWE and Punk is its champion. We haven’t heard from Rock in a week which is odd because during the Cena feud, you couldn’t shut Rock up. Lawler likes to spin things but Raw ended the way every show should end: with the focus on the WWE Champion. Cue Big Show of all people and Punk says he’s here to steal the spotlight. Show says Punk is right: the focus was on Punk to end the show last week but it should have been on Big Show. He cost Cena the world title, he made Cena be the first person to cash in and lose, he knocked out Cena and Punk STILL couldn’t beat Cena.

Punk would have tapped if not for Big Show, which Punk denies. Show says he’ll be the next WWE Champion which Punk scoffs at. Cena charges to the ring and goes right after Big Show while Punk looks on. Show runs to the floor and here’s AJ (officially called Lee now) in a business suit. This works for me. Tonight it’s Big Show vs. Cena for the title shot at Summerslam. You know, because Show has proven that he’s equal to Cena so many times now.

Bryan almost goes into AJ’s locker room but doesn’t.

Santino Marella vs. Alberto Del Rio

Del Rio jumps him and takes over quickly, hitting a snap suplex and leg drop. Del Rio has gold/black boots now which work a bit better. Santino backdrops him to the floor and we take a break. Back with Del Rio working on the arm and hitting a double stomp to the chest for no cover. Santino fires off some offense but as he does the splits, Del Rio kicks him in the head to break the momentum. Cross Armbreaker gets the tap out at 7:36.

Rating: D. Another match and another loss for Santino. For the 100th time, I get that Del Rio is a bigger star and Santino has no business beating him, SO WHY DO YOU HAVE SANTINO FACE HIM??? You have an army of people you can throw out there so you take a champion and have him lose. That’s FREAKING STUPID.

Del Rio says everyone is beneath him and if it’s not a world title match, he won’t compete.

Bryan is still trying to knock on AJ’s door.

Post break here’s Brodus and the dancing girls, but Vickie says she’s going to show how them how to really dance. Thankfully Damien Sandow comes out to break things up. He calls himself a martyr because of what happened with DX last week and calls it a crime against humanity. Sandow jumps Brodus and takes out the knee which has been injured for how many months now? Sandow fires off the knees and Brodus is in trouble. Damien breaks the necklace Brodus wears and leaves him laying. It’s about time these guys got a feud.

We get a clip from two weeks ago with Ziggler taking the Codebreaker from Jericho. Jericho jumped Ziggler on Friday, resulting in Sheamus kicking Ziggler’s head off.

Bryan finally goes into AJ’s room and she seems calm. AJ offers a handshake but Bryan yells at her. She tells him to shut up and says she’s his boss. Last week she saw guys in white coats walking around backstage and Bryan wanted to marry her so she could have him committed. Bryan says they were his groomsmen but AJ doesn’t buy it. Tonight, Bryan gets Sheamus and it’s not even for the title.

The filler continues with a video on Lesnar vs. HHH from last week.

You can vote on the stips for Sheamus vs. Bryan: No Holds Barred, Falls Count Anywhere or Street Fight. This filler is REALLY getting old.

Sheamus says he doesn’t care what match the fans pick but he’s glad the fans are picking. Sheamus thinks Josh is looking nervous but Josh says he’s fine. That seems to go nowhere.

We recap the fire before the show.

Daniel Bryan vs. Sheamus

By my math, the poll was open about 6 minutes. Bryan wants the people to stop chanting YES because that’s his thing. Street Fight gets over 70% of the vote and the fans chant YES. This is officially a RAW ACTIVE match, because the fans got to pick it. Oh I’m not going to like these three hour shows. Bryan does the moonsault out of the corner but jumps into a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker (not the Irish Curse Cole!). Sheamus gets tripped into the middle buckle and Bryan takes over.

Bryan works over the arm which is apparently still injured from the car attack by Del Rio which was almost a month ago. Sheamus comes back with some punches and we head to the floor. Bryan gets sent into the barricade a few times and they head up to the stage. Bryan kicks Sheamus off the stage and the champ (this is non title) falls FEET to the floor, possibly hurting his leg. A running knee off the stage hits Sheamus in the head and we take a break.

Back with Bryan working on the arm. Not the head or the leg, but the thing that was hurt four weeks ago. Back to the floor and Sheamus catches a diving Bryan, launching him into the barricade. Sheamus does the ten forearms with Bryan in the timekeeper’s area. A suplex puts Bryan back at ringside and it’s time for a chair and kendo stick. Bryan knocks both to the floor so Sheamus clotheslines him to the floor again.

As Sheamus goes for Bryan, Daniel grabs the kendo stick and beats the tar out of Sheamus with it. Bryan wedges the chair between the ropes but it allows Sheamus to get the stick and knock Bryan around with it. Bryan hits a dropkick to send Sheamus into the chair for two. We go to the floor for the fifth time and Sheamus hits a shoulder to send Bryan into the barricade. He loads up the steps but Bryan rams him into the post shoulder first. Back in and Bryan loads up the steps but Sheamus grabs him for White Noise. That gets broken up so Sheamus Brogue Kicks him for the pin at 14:10.

Rating: C+. That’s as high as I can go on this. This wasn’t a bad match but it felt like a house show main event. The biggest problems here were how repetitive it got (how many times did they go to the floor and someone got sent into the barricade?) and the psychology as Bryan couldn’t decide what part to work on. It was a decent match but it was nothing great.

Cole lies and says that Punk did his speech earlier at 8pm exactly, despite the first five minutes of the show being about the fire and recapping last week. We see a clip of Punk’s speech and that’s about it.

Post break Bryan is yelling about needing a doctor and he won’t leave the ring. Geez the filler is getting more and more obvious here. To fill time, we see ANOTHER clip of Punk’s speech. After that, Bryan is still whining for a doctor. Kofi comes out for his match anyway along with R-Truth. They tell Bryan to get out so Bryan makes fun of Little Jimmy. He then kicks Jimmy to the floor so Truth and Kofi go to the floor to check on him. The orderlies from last week come out and here’s AJ. She says Bryan needs help and that would include a psychiatric evaluation. Bryan and the orderlies go up the stage…and nothing of note happens.

Vince will name a new GM on Friday. I liked it without a GM on Friday.

Before the match, TOUT IT OUT BABY!

Kofi Kingston vs. Titus O’Neal

Titus starts with the power and catches a cross body. AW makes what sounds like a reference to Kobe Bryan’t rape case from like 8 years ago. Kofi counters a slam into a DDT but I’m trying to get over that Bryant reference. Why in the world would he say that? Kofi clotheslines him down and ruth clocks Darren. AW throws a shoe at Kofi and shouts about Kofi’s mama. That allows the Clash of the Titus to pin Kofi at 2:53.

Punk is talking to Cena in the back and says that he thinks Cena would have done the same thing when he tried to pin Cena. Actually he wouldn’t as he had the chance the week before but whatever. Punk says he respects Cena but he doesn’t care who wins tonight.

Back with an apology for what AW said. We also see what Cena and Punk did just a few seconds ago.

We recap Slater’s decimation by the new batch of legends last week.

Here’s Slater in the ring and he says he’s glad the legends have finally gone to the retirement home. He’s issuing a challenge to any current WWE Superstar to come face him.

Heath Slater vs. Randy Orton

I wrote Orton’s name before his music hit. Orton looks slimmer. During Orton’s entrance, we hear about ANOTHER technology thing you can do called Shazam, where you can get extra content or something. Slater pounds him into the corner but walks into a clothesline. Orton has a mohawk. WHY? RKO ends this at 1:15.

Time for Bryan’s psych evaluation. He answers every question with YES and starts shouting it over and over.

Chris Jericho/Christian vs. The Miz/Dolph Ziggler

Christian and Ziggler start things off and Christian takes him to the mat quickly. Off to Miz who is taken down and punched in the head by the Canadian. The younger Canadian that is. Back to Dolph as we hear about a Tout War between Jericho and Ziggler from over the weekend. Jericho vs. Miz now with Chris getting two off an elbow drop. Back to Ziggler as things speed up a bit. Jericho hits a top rope ax handle and knocks both heels to the floor. Christian dives on both guys as we take a break.

Back with Miz holding Jericho in a chinlock. Apparently during the break a Vickie distraction changed the control. Jericho backdrops out of the hold and it’s off to Christian. Ziggler comes in and avoids the Killswitch but gets caught in the sunset flip out of the corner for two. A BIG dropkick puts Christian down but it only gets two. Back to Miz for another chinlock but Christian sends Miz to the floor to escape. Miz breaks up the hot tag though and Christian is stomped on some more. Ziggler mostly misses a Fameasser and Lawler rips into him for it.

Christian trips Ziggler up and a double tag brings in Jericho and Miz. Jericho springboard dropkicks Dolph off the rope and hits the Lionsault on Miz for two. Christian spears Ziggler in half but gets sent shoulder first into the post. Jericho tries the Walls but Miz escapes and hits a big boot to put him down. The Finale is countered but Christian pokes Miz in the eye, allowing the Codebreaker to pin Miz at 13:23.

Rating: B-. Pretty good match here but Miz loses a week after winning the title because someone has to in this match. This got time and was a fun match, but it means we have to go to more non-wrestling stuff which has been dreadful tonight. The match was a breath of air, but it wasn’t anything above pretty good.

Post match Ziggler hits Jericho with the briefcase.

Time for another fire recap to fill in a few moments.

We go back to the psych evaluation for ink blot tests. The blots are thrown on the table to form a goat, which Bryan freaks out over.

TOUT IT OUT AGAIN BABY!

Tensai vs. Tyson Kidd

No entrance for Tensai anymore. Tensai runs him over and the fans chant Albert. Kidd has a small cut on his forehead. Kidd escapes a nerve hold and hits a spin kick followed by a rollup for two. A kick to the head sets up a Blockbuster for Kidd but it only gets two. And never mind as the chokebomb and backsplash get the pin at 2:10.

Tensai beats him up post match and hits the other the shoulder backbreaker. The decision is reversed. Sakamoto is beaten up too. Is this supposed to make me care about him any more?

Back to the psych evaluation and the result is Bryan is a jerk and obsessed with Charlie Sheen but he’s sane. The shrink leaves and Kane comes in, says he’s Bryan’s anger management therapist, and beats Bryan up. We spent how many segments to have Kane attack Bryan?

We get the same recap of HHH vs. Lesnar from earlier.

Here’s Punk to do commentary on the main event.

Big Show vs. John Cena

Winner gets Punk for the title at Summerslam. Cena pounds away on him to start but gets punched down almost immediately. Things slow way down and Show continues to prove why he gets the reputation of a guy who is slow and dull to watch. The SHH chop misses in the corner and Cena jumps on his back. Cena tries a cross body but gets caught. That goes nowhere so we’ll go back to the choke on Show’s back.

The choke eventually gets two but Cena gets launched to the floor as we take a break. Back with Show throwing Cena around even more and shouting at Punk. Punk seems to be totally neutral so far. Show hooks a bearhug as Punk says the always stupid line of everyone is the same size on the mat. No Punk, they’re not. Cena fights out but Show falls on him in a slam attempt for two. Chokeslam is countered into a DDT and both guys are down.

A side slam puts Cena down but the Vader Bomb misses. Cena initiates his finishing sequence but he charges into a chokeslam for two. Cena rolls to the floor and Punk says you can’t lose out there. Show picks him up to ram Cena into the post but Cena escapes. Show gets sent into the post but Cena dives at him, only to miss and crash into Punk. Cena gets in at 9 and Punk is holding his arm. Show misses the big punch and walks into the AA but Punk breaks it up for the DQ at 16:17. He hit Show in the back.

Rating: D+. This was as slow of a Big Show match as I can remember in a long time. We get the idea already: Show is big and strong, but since he’s gone on this path of destruction, he hasn’t won a big match unless I’m overlooking it. This was really boring and way too slow for anything to come out of it.

Punk kicks Show AFTER the bell. The only question is if the triple threat announcement is this week or next. Punk says both guys are losers. I guess it’s a no contest. Punk leaves and the announcement of the triple threat is made to end the show.

Overall Rating: D. This show isn’t horrible, but sweet goodness is it exhausting. There is SO much filler here and that becomes the main problem: instead of doing ANYTHING different, they just took what was a two hour show and stretched it into three hours. It doesn’t make the show better; it just makes it longer. This is going to get very tiring very fast, especially with all of the social media nonsense that only WWE cares about.

As for the actual content of the show, it was nothing great. The big angle of Punk being evil didn’t seem to be followed up on here for the most part as for most of the show he was pretty much in between either side. Big Show sucks the life out of the scenes he’s in as I don’t think anyone really cares about him at all. The Bryan stuff looks like it’s trying to set up a Charlie Sheen match at Summerslam, which is going to be a VERY big risk. This was a very disappointing show and I’m not looking forward to next week.

Results

Alberto Del Rio b. Santino Marella – Cross Armbreaker

Sheamus b. Daniel Bryan – Brogue Kick

Titus O’Neal b. Kofi Kingston – Clash of the Titus

Randy Orton b. Heath Slater – RKO

Christian/Chris Jericho b. The Miz/Dolph Ziggler – Codebreaker to Miz

Tyson Kidd b. Tensai via DQ when Tensai attacked Kidd after the match ended

John Cena vs. Big Show went to a no contest

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews

7 comments

  1. Nate says:

    Couldn’t disagree with you more. I enjoyed this show just as much, if not more, than last weeks.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Why? Not being sarcastic, but what was there to enjoy here?

    Nate Reply:

    Well the Sheamus DB match was really fun. Sheamus may be a bit dull on the mic, but he and Bryan have a lot of chemistry in the ring. I loved Bryan’s segments throughout the show. I REALLY enjoy watching Jericho work as a face more than I like his work as a heel. Ziggler is actually growing on me a bit. Randy returning, which like you, I knew was coming before his music even hit, was cool to see. It was by the far the best encounter I’ve ever seen between the Big Show and Cena as most of their matches suck.

    Also, I’ve never really seen much of Sandow or Kidd since I don’t watch a lot of Smackdown like you do, so I was really into their matches/segments. That top rope Blockbuster is purty and Sandow’s persona is great.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    The wrestling wasn’t my issue with the show. It was all the time being wasted between the matches. Bryan had what, five segments tonight? There was NO ONE else that could have gotten some of that time? Orton returning….eh yeah it was good to see him again but nothing of note.

    Like I said, the show wasn’t so much bad as it was draining. It felt like it went on forever and that they had no idea how to fill in three hours.

  2. Kobiyashi says:

    I agree with you KB for the most part, I thought there was way too much filler here with the recaps and the Vickie dancing and Tensai match. I also wondered why the hell del rio faced santino? Del Rio just won a big fatal four way on SD while Santino basically got squashed by Cesaro. What the hell was the point of that match? And why in the world does Santino have the us title? I constantly found myself chaining the channel throughout tonight’s show. Raw needs to be 2 hours.

  3. Mando>Eddie says:

    i was there live with my nephew and had a blast.. – yes wish i could have fast-forwarded the three replays of the whole HHH/Stephanie/Heyman angle from last week.. but overall a great night out.. – DB vs. Shaemus had some great bumps and although the Cena/Show feud has always been heavily criticized online seeing it live I was pulled into it and dug the storytelling..

  4. Chucker says:

    i agree with you review kb – by god this was a looooong show. i only finished watching it today, i had to go through this in 4 different sittings.