On This Day: September 22, 2008 – Monday Night Raw: Another Anniversary Show

Monday Night Raw
Date: September 22, 2008
Location: US Bank Arena, Cincinnati, Ohio
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler

This was on my request list for some reason. I’ve done a few shows from around this time lately so maybe it has to do with that. This is a few weeks after Unforgiven so Jericho would be world champion at this point and feuding with Shawn. Other than that I don’t remember a thing about this time so it’ll be interesting to look at. Let’s get to it.

We open with the world title hanging above the ring and a ladder underneath it. Here’s Jericho to some LOUD pyro. Cole says this is the 800th episode. So that’s probably…..WAIT WHAT??? On November 3 of the same year, they would have a big 800th episode celebration with a three hour show. Can’t they even keep their continuity straight for six weeks??? I’m going to have to do every show in the history of Raw to get the right episodes aren’t I?

ANYWAY, Jericho sits on top of the ladder and talks about how Shawn has convinced Mike Adamle to make their match at No Mercy a ladder match. Shawn has claimed that he revolutionized the ladder match and the mindless sheep that the fans are believed him. Just because HBK says something, it doesn’t mean it’s true. Jericho on the other hand is an honest man. The truth is that he’s won three titles in a ladder match. He’s won more ladder matches than Shawn has ever appeared in.

Jericho says the last thing you’ll see at the PPV is this, and he pulls down the title. Shawn attacked him recently but he came back, because he’s just better than Shawn. Jericho keeps talking and is interrupted by….Randy Orton? Jericho starts to call himself champion but Orton cuts him off. He says that if not for him kicking Punk in the head, Jericho wouldn’t be champion. The ladder match doesn’t mean anything because whoever wins is living on borrowed time.

Jericho asks what’s stopping him from punching Orton right now. Punching Shawn’s wife was an accident but this would be on purpose. Randy is still injured here. Orton has spoken to Mike Adamle and anyone that hits him is suspended immediately. Jericho says get well soon and leaves. Orton says he’ll be champion again and throws the ladder out. Randy goes to leave and here’s Punk. Punk gets in his face and slaps him, causing Adamle to come down and suspend him indefinitely.

Now here’s Shane McMahon of all people to dance around on stage in white shoes. Now he dances in the ring a bit. He got a big pop so I can’t complain much here. Apparently he’s here to evaluate Adamle later on. Shane overrules Adamle’s suspension of Punk so Orton yells about that too. The suspension rule is still in effect, but it starts right now. Shane asks Orton to leave and makes Punk vs. Rhodes and Jericho/JBL vs. Batista/Shawn. Shane dances some more and it’s FINALLY over. This segment ran nearly 20 minutes which is WAY too long given what we got out of it.

Cody Rhodes vs. CM Punk

Feeling out process to start. It’s amazing how much bigger this would be in just a few years. Punk uses his strikes to take over, including a spinning elbow to the face. Cody sends him to the outside but Punk kicks him through the ropes. They brawl on the floor before heading back in with Cody hitting a top rope cross body, rolled through for two. Cody hits a few knees, including a big one in the corner for two.

Punk loads up the GTS but Cody escapes and bails to the floor as we take a break. Back with Cody working on the ankle/leg after crotching him during the break. It’s leg lock time as the match slows down. Punk counters that into an ankle lock of all things but Cody makes the rope. The running knee hits but the bulldog is countered of course. GTS gets the pin about a second later.

Rating: C. Not bad here but Cody didn’t mean a thing at this point so the match wasn’t going to be anything good. Punk was really just a glorified upper midcard guy at this point so this didn’t mean much of anything. Somehow Punk wouldn’t get the real revenge he was looking for until 2011.

DiBiase and Manu run in for the beatdown but Kofi makes the save. He and Punk would win the tag titles very soon.

Smackdown ReBound is about Kozlov attacking Jeff Hardy. He also beat up MVP and HHH.

Adamle complains to Shane about being embarrassed out there. Shane says Adamle is doing fine and that he shouldn’t be worried. Kane comes in and wants Mysterio, and he’ll get him at No Mercy apparently. Kane tells Shane to say hi to Linda for him. He leaves and Shane explains the history between himself and Kane.

A photographer is talking to Kelly when Beth and Santino come up. Santino has a facial injury and Kelly laughed last week, so it’s time for pain tonight. He makes fun of Batista who of course pops up behind him. An awkward staredown ensues.

Santino Marella vs. Deuce

We get the Honk-A-Meter prematch but Deuce cuts it off. This is non-title of course. Deuce goes after the injured face and drops a punch for two. Santino rolls him up for the pin out of nowhere. This was like a minute long.

Santino talks about how great Beth is post match.

Kane vs. Evan Bourne

Evan is an ECW guy at this point and is standing in for Mysterio who is still injured. Bourne fires off a kick to the ribs which gets him nowhere, followed by an enziguri to stagger the monster. A Kane powerbomb is countered and Bourne kicks some more. Bourne keeps trying to keep things moving but Kane gets in a single punch to stop the offense dead in its tracks. A big boot misses and Kane gets caught in the ropes. A moonsault to the floor puts Kane down again and the double knees get two. Kane gets in a single uppercut and begins the total destruction. HUGE chokeslam gets the pin.

Rating: C. This was a lot better than I was expecting from it. Bourne is a guy who is small enough to be able to make you feel sorry for him against a monster like this so the crowd was getting into it. On top of that it plays up the Kane vs. small guys feud which is what they’re going with despite it getting annoying. Fun match.

Rey comes out and gets beaten down as well.

Jamie Noble asks Shane for another match with Regal. Dolph Ziggler comes up and introduces himself and leaves. Orton comes up for another distraction and says overturning the suspension wasn’t cool. Shane says it’s cool and that Orton is getting off easily. Orton threatens him so Shane says he’s a fourth generation McMahon. That means something I guess.

Beth Phoenix vs. Kelly Kelly

Beth takes him into the corner but Kelly moves out of the way for some speedy gymnastics. Beth comes back with a Buckle Bomb and yells about Batista. Candace is watching in the back. Kelly comes back with a cross body out of the corner for two. Santino’s interference backfires and Kelly gets the rollup for the pin. This was when the Divas were only bad and not horrible yet.

They set to double team Kelly until Batista makes the save. Santino ACTUALLY HITS Batista. Guess how well that goes.

We recap the feud between the Dirt Sheet and Word Up, Cryme Tyme’s show. They had argued for awhile on their shows, resulting in an AWESOME rap video parody by Miz and Morrison. Dirt Sheet and Miz/Morrison were hilarious at this point.

John Morrison/The Miz vs. Cryme Tyme

JTG vs. Morrison to start things off. Miz cheats as is his nature but JTG comes back with a spinning clothesline for two. Shad comes in with a huge gorilla press to send Morrison to the floor. Shad throws JTG onto both of them and we take a break. Back with Morrison holding an armbar on JTG which is quickly broken. Off to Miz for more chinlockery as he prevents the hot tag. The tag goes through a few seconds later and Shad cleans house. Powerslam gets two on Miz. Delayed release gordbuster puts Miz down but Morrison kicks Shad in the head which lets Miz get the pin.

Rating: D. This wasn’t very good. The problem was that these two were better teams but for some reason neither were tag champions at this point. It’s not that the belts meant anything so it doesn’t really matter but it’s still a pretty stupid miss. Boring match here with the majority of it being spent in chinlocks.

Jericho tries to convince Adamle that Shane is manipulating him. Jericho has an idea but we don’t get to hear it.

We run down the No Mercy card.

Charlie Haas is at Dave and Busters to shill the Mr. Perfect DVD with an imitation. He does the sports bit that Perfect did which is kind of funny.

Shawn Michaels/Batista vs. John Bradshaw Layfield/Chris Jericho/Lance Cade

Jericho’s idea was to make it 3-2 and I guess it worked. Shawn and Cade start things off with Shawn destroying him. Cade reverses a whip and JBL adds a right hand to really give Lance an opening. Off to Jericho for a chinlock and an enziguri puts Shawn down. Off to JBL who hits a swinging neckbreaker for two. Back to Cade for more of a beating in the corner. Jericho chokes away as this has been one sided for the most part. Bradshaw comes in and they slug it out but JBL kicks him in the face to put him right back down.

It’s JBL vs. Batista at No Mercy if that clears anything up. Shawn jumps into the fallaway slam but he counters into a DDT to put both guys down. There’s the tag to Batista who cleans house. Spinebuster to Jericho and a powerslam sets up the Shawn elbow. Superkick is countered into a Walls attempt but Shawn rolls him up for two. Everything breaks down and Batista spears JBL outside. Lionsault misses and it’s off to Cade. Forearm puts him down but Jericho’s distraction lets him hit a sitout Rock Bottom to Shawn for the pin.

Rating: C. Just a main event tag match here that felt like it belonged at a house show. It wasn’t bad or anything but it just wasn’t interesting. There wasn’t much focus on the JBL vs. Batista match at all and Batista was only in the match for about a minute or so. Not bad, but just kind of there.

Overall Rating: C-. This wasn’t a bad show but it was nothing interesting at all. Nothing really happened and while they pushed No Mercy, this isn’t a show that you would need to see to see No Mercy. Orton was in a weird place here where he was hurt, but it was clear they wanted him to be the #2 heel on the roster. That’s hard to do but they tried hard. It came off as forced though and it didn’t quite work. Pretty meh show.

 

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