Monday Night Raw – November 26, 2012: It Could Have Been Worse, And That’s High Praise Anymore

Monday Night Raw
Date: November 26, 2012
Location: Cajundome, Lafayette, Louisiana
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler

We’re getting closer to TLC now and the main story tonight is an interview with the three NXT guys. I’m curious to see where things are going with them as we haven’t gotten an explanation yet. On top of that we’re likely to get some more matches set for the PPV, including whatever Punk’s title match is going to be. Let’s get to it.

The voiceover gets us going with a recap of AJ/Cena/Vickie/Dolph. You know, because people aren’t going to remember it. Oh and there’s stuff about the NXT guys.

Ryback vs. Titus O’Neal

Titus pounds him down to start but walks into the Thesz Press and head smashes. O’Neal wants time out so Ryback runs him over. Darren Young tries to interfere, allowing Titus to hit the Clash of the Titus for one. Ryback shoves the Players together, hits a spinebuster, the Meat Hook and Shell Shock for the pin at 3:17.

Rating: D+. Total squash here as another pair of guys who are likely going to be champions soon lose because Ryback has to squash someone and there’s NO ONE but these guys he could do it to. The problem with booking like this is why am I supposed to buy the Players as a major threat now if they just got killed like that? Especially if they’re champions, because apparently one guy can beat them up.

Ryback says he’s not leaving until he gets Punk, the three guys, or all four.

Security comes out after a break and Ryback destroys one of them. Vickie comes out and says she has no choice but Ryback cuts her off. He wants Punk at TLC but Vickie says he has to leave. Ryback tells her to shut up because he’s not finished. He wants Punk at TLC in a TLC match or he’ll tear the ring apart. Vickie says ok but get out of the ring. Ryback goes after security but they all leave.

We recap Hornswoggle spraying water on Rosa last week. Earlier today Rosa yells at Horny but he wants to know who would want to kiss her and give her flowers. Alberto comes to her defense but Khali stops Alberto before any damage can be done.

Alberto Del Rio vs. Great Khali

This is joined in progress after a break with Khali chopping Del Rio’s chest. Rosa is watching in the back. Horny is at ringside as Khali chops away some more. Del Rio comes back with a shot to the arm and a superkick before hammering on the arm a bit. Alberto charges into an elbow in the corner and some clotheslines from Khali. There’s the big chop but Ricardo’s distraction stops the Vice. Horny bites Ricardo’s pants and there’s a kick and Codebreaker to the arm. Armbreaker gets the tap at 3:35.

Rating: D+. I’m glad Khali is back given how bad he was doing there for awhile and it’s good to see Del Rio down the card and fighting ANYONE not named Orton for awhile, but this was nothing much. Then again, what do you expect from a guy like Khali? Not much of a match but it did its job well enough I guess.

Punk and Heyman come in to yell at Vickie and accuse her of being biased. She gave him the shot because of the screwjobs Punk has been behind. He denies being behind them but Vickie puts Punk in a match with the winner of the Raw Poll: either Bryan or Kane.

We get a sitdown interview with the three NXT guys from earlier today. Ambrose cuts off cole and wants to know who is asking about them. Ambrose says they’re not working for Punk and Rollins says the question should be why are they doing this. Rollins talks about how everyone has to answer to everyone, but at the end of the day it’s a popularity contest that determines who gets everything in the WWE. He says they’re a shield against wrong.

Ambrose says it was wrong to have Punk face guys he already fought and if Ryback had been champion for a year and Punk tried to interfere, they would have stopped him too. Cole asks if Roman has anything to say. He says if he has something to say, he’ll say it. Ambrose says they’re not the Nexus or the NWO but rather the shield from injustice. Reigns stands up and says this interview is over. They all walk out to end things. Not bad but I’m not wild on the Shield name.

Fandango is coming and we see his face. Egads this is going to SUCK.

Alicia Fox vs. Tamina Snuka

Tamina says this match is a warning to AJ to not mess with Vickie again. Jerry goes onto some small rants about how Shield is crooked. Total squash by Tamina who wins with a Samoan Drop and Superfly Splash in 2:05. Next.

Here’s Cena to address the AJ/Vickie stuff. After probably the tenth recap of the kiss, Cena talks about how he’s had a ton of moments in his ten years here, but he’s never been interrogated more than having people ask if AJ is a good kisses. He’s about to talk about it when Vickie comes out to say I told you so. She pulls out a big box (not that kind of box. It’s a PG show) and has matching bathrobes for Cena and AJ. Vickie goes on a long rant about AJ and here she comes, looking SMOKING hot in a white top and jeans.

AJ says she’s had issues with men over the last year but she’s learning from them. Since she’s not GM anymore, she can date whoever she wants and can do whatever she wants. She goes to kiss John but Vickie freaks out. Vickie is called a dog, and here’s Ziggler to interrupt AGAIN. Dolph asks what’s going on with Cena and why Cena attacked him on Smackdown. Ziggler says he’s figured it out. Last week when AJ kissed Cena, she was thinking about Dolph the whole time. Cena is about to go after Ziggler but Vickie stops him. It’s Cena vs. Ziggler tonight.

Kofi Kingston vs. Tensai

Non-title, because why make it a title match? Tensai knocks him down into the corner so Kofi speeds things up….and has his head knocked off by a shoulder block. Tensai puts on perhaps the least interested looking armbar of all time before Kingston comes back and hits a chop off the top rope.

A clothesline puts Tensai down (ignore that he was clearly falling before Kofi touched him) and there’s the Boom Drop. Trouble in Paradise is blocked and Tensai catches the pendulum kick in the corner. An elbow gets two but a Vader Bomb misses. Kofi hits Trouble in Paradise from the floor and wins with a top rope cross body at 3:30.

Rating: D. This was really sloppy and should have ended with the first Trouble in Paradise attempt. Tensai clearly just does not care at all anymore and why should he? He’s a pure jobber to the stars and not a very good one at that. This was a dull match that was there so Barrett can look at Kofi some more.

Barrett hands Kofi the title post match.

Bryan shows Kane a voting map which proves how much more popular he is than Kane. Unfortunately they don’t have polling data where Kane comes from so Kane can’t win. Kane offers to send Bryan there to find out but we get the poll results instead. Kane wins 59-41, in a surprising result. Bryan gets Rey Mysterio as a consolation prize.

Daniel Bryan vs. Rey Mysterio

Feeling out process to start with Rey sending Bryan to the floor, only for Daniel to slide back inside and hit a running knee to the face from the apron. Back in and Bryan cranks on the arm in a move that looks SICK. He has an armbar on but bends Rey’s arm back so far that he can stand on it for two. FREAKING OW MAN! Both guys get sent to the floor as the other one slides back in and we take a break.

Back with Rey getting crotched and Bryan firing away kicks to Rey in the Tree of Woe. Bryan puts on a surfboard for a bit before sending Rey into the post on the floor. That gets two so Bryan loads up a superplex. Rey fights out and hits the seated senton as things speed up. Rey escapes a sunset flip and kicks Bryan in the head for two. Bryan gets sent into the corner where Rey hits a 619 around the post and the top rope splash for the pin at 12:43.

Rating: C+. Not bad here and it was nice to see a clean pin. I have less of a problem with a tag team champion losing in a singles match, especially when it could set up a title match later on between the two teams. This show has been having bad match after bad match so far so this was a nice change of pace. Decent stuff here, as expected.

Alberto winks at Rosa and walks away with Ricardo. Who is he more interested in anyway?

We recap Raw from last week AGAIN. Dear freaking goodness WE GET IT.

Now we recap the end of Smackdown with Ziggler pinning Orton and getting taken out by Cena to end the show.

Dolph Ziggler vs. John Cena

Feeling out process to start with neither guy being able to get an advantage, likely because they’re just feeling each other out. Ziggler takes Cena down and we take a break. Back with Cena on the floor, apparently after having been rammed into the steps. Ziggler throws him back into the ring and does situps while using Cena to hold his feet down. Cena pops up and starts his finishing sequence, but the Shuffle is broken up by a kick to the face. A jumping DDT gets two for Ziggler and it’s sleeper time.

Cena rams Ziggler into the corner to counter and puts on the STF but Ziggler does the crawl to the ropes to escape. Cena staggers around and walks into a BIG dropkick to put both guys down. Ziggler goes up top for a cross body but Cena rolls through into the AA. Dolph kind of botches the counter as he lands on his legs instead of his feet, but he comes back with the Zig Zag for two.

Cena hits the spinning slam and loads up the Shuffle again, but the knee gives out. John rolls to the floor and Ziggler unhooks a buckle pad. This draws out AJ to stop him but Vickie comes out as well and pulls her off the apron (doesn’t that mean she’s fired?). Dolph tries a shot with the case but but Cena ducks and hits the AA for the pin at 11:50.

Rating: B-. Another good match between these two, but it makes me wonder what we’re building to with this story now. It would have seemed to be for this match, so maybe it’s a mixed tag or something? I certainly hope not, because that would be more than a waste of time. The match here was good though, which is always a good thing.

AJ kisses Cena again post match.

Sheamus vs. Antonio Cesaro

Time for a match to be stretched to about fifteen minutes because we need a match to be stretched to about fifteen minutes. Sheamus pounds away on him in Sheamus-esque fashion before we head to the floor. Cesaro whips him into the steps and we take a break. Back with Cesaro getting two off a clothesline and the same off a gutwrench suplex. Irish Curse gets two for Sheamus but White Noise is countered.

Instead Sheamus gets two off a powerslam, but Antonio comes back with a kind of reverse Angle Slam, where he slammed Sheamus forward instead of backwards. I’ve never seen that before and it gets two. Sheamus kicks him away and pulls himself to the top. The shoulder jumps into the uppercut though, drawing a gasp from the crowd. The Neutralizer is broken up and the Brogue Kick sends Antonio to the floor for the countout at 12:52.

Rating: C+. This got good towards the end and I’m glad Cesaro didn’t get pinned, but it was really hard to believe that he ever had a legit chance at winning. Sheamus continues to look strong before the match at TLC, where he actually could get the title back. Either way, decent stuff here and thankfully they didn’t pin Cesaro.

Show comes out during the referee’s count but it means nothing. He has a chair and Sheamus says he’ll do it right now if Show wants. Show literally rips and breaks the chair apart.

Damien Sandow vs. Zack Ryder

Ryder’s trunks and pads have a Ghostbusters theme to them now. Sandow gets flipped down and he hides on the floor, only to come back with strikes to the face for two. Off to a chinlock by Damien followed by a knee drop. The Wind-Up Elbow gets two and it’s off to a crossface chickenwing. Ryder makes a comeback with a forearm in the corner but Sandow rolls to the floor before the Broski Boot can hit. Ryder goes up, only to get crotched and caught in the Terminus for the pin at 4:50.

Rating: D+. Picture a Sandow vs. Ryder match. This one is the most recent of them. That’s all I’ve got here.

Since we’ve got time to kill, here’s the Shield interview from earlier. As in the whole thing.

Kane vs. CM Punk

Kane slugs him into the corner to start and Punk bails as we take a very early break. Back with Punk working on Kane’s leg. Punk goes to the floor and might hurt his own knee in the process. There’s already a bandage over his knee so maybe there’s something to the knee injury. Anyway the suicide dive takes Kane out but Punk can’t follow up immediately. Back in and Punk hits a running knee in the corner followed by a second one. He loads up a third but Kane comes out with an uppercut to take Punk down.

Side slam gets two for Kane as Punk tries to get his knee to work again. Kane goes up top and hits the clothesline but Punk comes back with a swinging neckbreaker for two. Heyman plays cheerleader a bit but Punk springboards into a chokeslam. Heyman, ever the good manager, pulls Punk’s feet into the ropes so Kane can’t immediately cover. Kane loads up the Tombstone but Punk escapes and hits Kane in the knee. GTS gets the clean pin at 10:20.

Rating: C. Not bad here but I’m a fan of both guys. Kane is fine for a spot like this because he’s not going to be hurt badly by a single loss. Either way, decent stuff here and it gave Punk something to do tonight that didn’t have anything to do with Ryback. It’s nice to get a week off from the same stuff every week before a PPV for a change.

Post match here’s the Shield to stare at Punk and attack Kane. Bryan comes in for the save and the tag champs get beaten down. The fans finally get what they want as Ryback comes down. Punk dives into the crowd and Ryback runs into the ring to fight the whole Shield. He knocks them all down at once and powerbombs Rollins. Meathooks put down Reigns and Ambrose.

Punk tries to come in for the save but gets put in a powerbomb position as well. Reigns spears him down and the numbers catch up to Ryback. The Triple Powerbomb puts him down again. But Ryback is still incredibly strong right? These constant beatdowns by three minor league guys mean NOTHING right? This doesn’t hurt his push at all, right? Punk stands tall as Lawler claims conspiracy to end the show.

Overall Rating: D+. This show felt especially long tonight because of all the recaps but at least we had some good matches to balance things out. Also none of the matches felt overly long for the same of being overly long, which is definitely a step in the right direction. As usual with the show though, the third hour being there is what brings the show down. Well that and the incessant recaps of the Cena/AJ stuff. This could have been a lot worse though, which is high praise for Raw anymore.

Results

Ryback b. Titus O’Neal – Shell Shock

Alberto Del Rio b. Great Khali – Cross Armbreaker

Tamina Snuka b. Alicia Fox – Superfly Splash

Rey Mysterio b. Daniel Bryan – Top Rope Splash

John Cena b. Dolph Ziggler – Attitude Adjustment

Sheamus b. Antonio Cesaro via countout

Damien Sandow b. Zack Ryder – Terminus

CM Punk b. Kane – GTS

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews

7 comments

  1. Mike R. says:

    Can that Roman guy wrestle? Because he looks like a star.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    I’ve only seen a few of his matches. He’s not bad but he’s part of the Samoan Family (son of Sika, brother of Rosey, cousin of Yokozuna and Rikishi) so you know he’s going to be good.

  2. Jay says:

    RAW was good tonight and I think Vince not being there allowed everyone to loosen up some. I think I like The Shield and the Interview was good,Ambrose stole it. Good Matches also from Punk/Kane,Cena/Ziggler,Rey/Bryan,and Sheamus/Cesaro.

  3. Nate says:

    I guess it’s just me, but I found that extremely excruciating.

  4. Mando>Eddie says:

    It wasn’t that long ago they put Tensai over both Cena and Punk in short order. That really fell off a cliff.

  5. SoM says:

    The reverse angle slam thingy that Cesaro did was the Alpamere Waterslide. He seemed to have no issue with picking up Sheamus for it. He should use that as his finisher.

  6. CCTV says:

    Cena – Ziggler match was superb in my view, & though I’m a cena fan, I wanted ziggler to win by that cheap shot with the case… but that match made my night & I’m looking forward for one more match at TLC…