Monday Night Raw – May 19, 2014: That’s A Lot Of Phones

Monday Night Raw
Date: May 19, 2014
Location: 02 Arena, London, England
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, John Bradshaw Layfield

It’s time for the post Wrestlemania European tour and things are in a big state of flux right now. Aside from the disastrous stock news on Friday, tonight we find out the fate of the WWE Championship due to Daniel Bryan being sidelined several months with neck surgery. The show was taped earlier in the day but I’ve avoided spoilers. Let’s get to it.

 

The Wyatts are in the ring to open the show and Bray sings the song as the fans all wave their phones for a pretty awesome visual. Bray talks about people laying his head down to sleep which is when everyone sees themselves as a superhero that can fix all the wrongs of the world and dream of payback. Then we wake up and see that we’re not really superheroes that can fix anything.

We kid ourselves by saying everything is fine but everything is wrong. Bray used to have this teacher that looked down on him and went to great measures to tell him that he was a piece of trash. She believed that everything she read in a book was true and everything he said was a lie. One day he went up to her and asked why she thought she was so much better than him. Was it because her parents paid for her to go to a school and waive her degree around, filling his head with propaganda?

Bray didn’t accept that so she told him that he was an evil boy. That woman is now in a retirement home while he’s here as the speaker of 1000 truths with the whole world in his hands. The fans start singing again and Bray loves it. That is his payback for the teacher that told him he was wrong. His tongue is the scorpion’s tail and he offers to save men like John Cena but John hides behind his false bravado.

The fans think Cena sucks and Bray promises to end this fairy tale at Payback. He’ll be the last man standing or no man will ever stand again. Tonight Luke Harper is going to put John Cena down. This brings out Cena, but he comes through the crowd to get at Bray as Harper and Rowan go to the aisle. Bray gets caught in the AA before Harper and Rowan can chase him off.

We recap Daniel Bryan being attacked by Kane last week and Stephanie saying how sorry she was. We’ll get the update on the title later tonight.

Here are Cesaro and Heyman with something to say. Heyman says the people in the ring are the stars while the fans are the wannabes. They should worship the mic he uses as he talks about Brock conquer the Streak. The fans finish the line for him so Heyman lays on the ground, asking who he is. “No I’m not your queen finally dead. I’M THE UNDERTAKER AT WRESTLEMANIA! EXCEPT I CAN GET UP!”

Sheamus vs. Cesaro

Non-title. Sheamus isn’t exactly popular in England. Cesaro takes him into the corner to start for a slap to the face but Cesaro bails to the floor before the ten forearms can get started. Back in and the ten forearms connect, but Cesaro bails to the floor again. They head back inside for some uppercuts from Cesaro as a JBL chant starts up. Sheamus comes back with the slingshot shoulder and the crowd has switched to JERRY. Cesaro sidesteps a charge to send Sheamus to the floor as we take a break.

Back with Cesaro ramming in knees to the ribs and putting on a sleeper. Sheamus quickly fights out with some shots to the ribs and the ax handles to the face. Not that it matters as Sheamus misses a charge into the post and Cesaro takes over again. The superplex from the apron gets two but Cesaro charges into the Irish Curse.

Sheamus hits the rolling fireman’s carry for another two and they have a hard slugout. Cesaro sends the Irishman chest first into the buckle and catches him coming off the top with the uppercut for two. Sheamus makes a quick comeback but gets distracted by Heyman, allowing Cesaro to grab a German suplex for the pin at 12:36.

Rating: C+. Two weeks. He’s been champion TWO WEEKS and he’s already getting pinned in the ring on Raw. Do they just want the titles to mean nothing at all or is this some massive rib that we don’t get? Yeah it’s Cesaro, but was there NO OTHER WAY to set up whatever they’re doing here?

Post match Cesaro won’t shake hands.

Shield vs. Evolution at Payback is now anything goes and an elimination match. We get a video of the end of last week’s show.

Big E. vs. Ryback

This is the first of eight Beat the Clock challenges. The winner in the fastest time gets an Intercontinental Title shot at Payback. Ryback runs Big E. over to start but E. shoves him into the corner with ease. A missed charge allows Ryback to take over again and stomp away before getting two off a suplex. Some hard elbows in the corner have Big E. in more trouble and a big driving shoulder puts him down again. Big E. grabs a belly to belly suplex for another two but Ryback nails a spinebuster and beats on his chest. The Meathook gets two but Big E. slips out of a powerbomb, setting up the Big Ending for the pin at 5:02.

Rating: D+. Not great here but it’s nice to see Big E. get a win like this. I can’t imagine that the time is going to hold up over the course of eight matches, but at it’s not a terrible time. I’m not sure who all they’re going to put into the challenge to have sixteen guys, but it might help get some people on television.

Some special Olympians trained at the WWE Performance Center. That’s always cool.

R-Truth/Trinity vs. Fandango/Layla

Fandango gets a BIG reaction, at least partially due to having the British Layla with him. Before the match, a LIVID Summer Rae storms out to the ring and kisses Fandango before getting into a catfight with Layla. No match.

Bolieve! This week on Smackdown.

We get Daniel Bryan’s music but it’s Stephanie coming out doing the YES pose. She says the fans should be chanting YES right now because Daniel Bryan is at home convalescing. She says she’s got some…well she’ll let someone else say it. We get a quick montage of Barrett saying he has BAD NEWS before we get a horrible imitation from Stephanie.

She’s thinking about stripping Bryan of the title and awarding it to Kane. Or she could strip him of the title and award it to Bad News Barrett. How about to Batista? Seriously though, if anyone is deserving, it should be HHH. In all seriousness though, Bryan won’t be stripped of the title. Instead, Bryan has to show up next week on Raw and surrender the title because it’s best for business. In other words, no real news this week.

Here are the Union Jacks, more commonly known as 3MB. Here’s his opponent.

Rusev vs. Heath Slater

Before the match Lana talks about how great Putin is and how the Soviet Union will take over England and America. Slater tries to dive on Rusev but all three Jacks are destroyed. We hed inside for the opening bell and pain quickly comes to Slater. There’s the spinning slam and the Accolade gets the submission at 38 seconds.

Shield still wants to know if that was Evolution’s best shot. Reigns is sporting a black eye from a match against Orton over the weekend. Rollins is ready for Batista tonight.

Alberto Del Rio vs. Rob Van Dam

Another Beat the Clock match with the time at 5:02. They trade some quick rollups for two each to start before Del Rio gets a quick suplex for two. Del Rio kicks him to the floor as we’ve got 3:30 to go in the clock. Back in and we hit the chinlock on RVD before he comes back with some lame clotheslines.

They seem to get mixed up with Van Dam wanting Rolling Thunder but Alberto being too close, forcing Rob into a legdrop instead. Del Rio comes back with a Backstabber for two but Van Dam kicks out of the armbreaker. A running flip splash keeps Del Rio down but the Five Star misses. A rolling cradle gets two for Alberto but he misses the low superkick, giving Rob the pin at 4:15.

Rating: C-. This is the problem with Beat the Clock: the matches don’t have time to go anywhere and people keep having to try for fast pins instead of giving the match a chance to build. These two don’t really have the best chemistry either, making the whole thing kind of mess. Fine from a technical standpoint but not much else.

We look back at the opening segment.

Cena is in the back and says he’ll have the Usos in his corner again tonight. At Payback, he’ll have to face a crowd full of Bray Wyatt’s followers. The three of them start rhythmically beating on their chests and do the We Say Us bit. This was rather strange.

Evolution is ready for Payback and tells Batista to take Rollins out.

Seth Rollins vs. Batista

Shield is banned from ringside, but HHH is guest ring announcer. His first announcement: Randy Orton is guest timekeeper. Rollins introduces Reigns and Ambrose as the special guest commentators to even things out. Batista hammers away to start but Rollins takes him into the corner for a quick stomping. Batista rams him into the apron as Ambrose is toying with JBL on commentary. Rollins escapes a powerslam and we take a break.

Back with Batista kicking Rollins out to the floor but holding his elbow in the corner. Evolution gets a bit too close to Rollins and Shield stands up to stop them. Back in and we hit the chinlock on Rollins before a hard elbow to the jaw gets two. Rollins fights back by shoving Batista off the ropes and nailing a running sleeper drop. A running dropkick puts Big Dave on the floor and there’s a nice suicide dive to take him down again.

Orton teases getting involved, drawing Ambrose and Reigns off commentary. Rollins misses the springboard knee to the head and gets caught by the spinebuster. Dave charges into a boot though and the springboard knee gets a VERY close two. Seth goes up again but gets shoved off the top, triggering a brawl on the floor. Ambrose runs across the announcers’ tables to take out HHH but gets caught by Orton. Rollins comes over to go after HHH but gets caught by a right hand, drawing the DQ at 13:42.

Rating: B-. I was digging this match but it’s a smart move to not have anyone job in the end. Rollins looked on equal footing with Batista out there, which is way more than I would have expected from him. Shield has looked completely equal to Evolution throughout this entire feud and that’s a GREAT sign.

Batista gets speared post match but a HHH distraction saves him from the Triple Bomb.

Alicia Fox vs. Paige

Non-title. Alicia kicks her right in the face to start but gets kicked in the chest and headbutted for her efforts. Fox bails to the floor but catches Paige coming out and rams her into the barricade. Back in and Fox leans over Paige for a slap to the face before sending Paige into the corner. Paige gets caught with a backbreaker into the corner and a kick to the ribs, allowing Fox to grab a deep cover for the pin at 3:32. Just like that.

Rating: D. Sheamus was bad enough. At the end of the day, this is still Alicia Fox. I think that’s about enough for the explanation.

Fox freaks out again post match, but this time due to happiness. She puts Lawler’s crown on to celebrate this time.

Luke Harper calls Cena a mouse that will be eaten by a snake. Bray says the Usos are dominoes that will be knocked over.

Mark Henry vs. Dolph Ziggler

Beat the Clock again with the time set at 4:15. Apparently this is the final match in the competition so I have no idea what Cole was talking about with eight. It’s not even eight people. Henry runs Ziggler over to start and suplexes him down as we’re already down to three minutes. Dolph falls to the floor but gets back in at eight. Ziggler hits what was supposed to be a Fameasser but looked more like a Rough Ryder for two.

Henry throws him outside again but Ziggler comes back with a quick dropkick. 90 seconds left. Another dropkick puts Henry down and we’ve got less than a minute to go. Dolph heads up top but gets caught in a powerslam for two. He loads up the World’s Strongest Slam but takes too long, allowing Ziggler to hit the Zig Zag. Time runs out though at 4:15 and Van Dam wins the challenge.

Rating: D+. This was an awkward match with both guys missing a few moves here and there. Van Dam winning the challenge is fine as he’ll get a good match out of Barrett. Ziggler winning would have been fine as well so there wasn’t a bad choice out of either guy here. The match didn’t work though.

Van Dam comes out and gets caught by a Bull Hammer from Barrett. Bad News sucks up to the London crowd and says there’s no way this Englishman is losing to a Yank. Rule Britannia plays Barrett out.

Renee Young brings out Adam Rose for a chat as JBL goes on a huge rant about how much he hates bunnies. Rose wants to know where his cheeseburger is and we’ve got a man named Ethan in a cheeseburger shirt. Rose: “He’s got sesame seeds on his buns. We’re taking him to the doctor next week.” The fans cut off the interview to sing the song (JBL: “STOP IT LONDON! THAT BUNNY COULD HAVE FLEAS!”) before Renee asks why Rose has targeted Swagger and Colter. He just wants them to stop being “grumpy pantses.”

Rose has the bunny dance (JBL: “Euthanize the bunny right now.”) but here are Swagger and Colter to interrupt. Colter wants to know what Rose’s deal is and even asks Swagger to stand back. He calls Rose the thing that is bringing America down and he’ll bring England down too. Colter wants to have a fight with Rose but Jack gets in a cheap shot. He goes after some of the members of the party but Rose is back up for the save.

Bolieve!

John Cena vs. Luke Harper

The Usos are here to counter Rowan and Harper and the phones come out for Bray’s entrance again. That’s quite a cool looking sight. The fans start the dueling chants as Cena hits a bulldog and a big boot to the face gets two. Harper gets in a shot of his own for two as we take our final break. Back with Harper knocking Cena down again before kicking him in the face for two. There’s the Gator Roll and a suplex gets another two count.

We get the singing John Cena Sucks chant as Cena comes back with the ProtoBomb but Harper is ready for the Shuffle and catches Cena in a German suplex. Harper misses a big boot and falls out to the floor, only to get caught in another ProtoBomb. Now the Shuffle connects but Luke escapes the AA and slams Cena face first for two. Harper busts out a dropkick of all things to send Cena to the floor, setting up a suicide dive.

Back in and Cena grabs a tornado DDT for two but gets caught by a superkick for an even closer near fall. Harper busts out a torture rack neckbreaker of all things but stops to look at Bray for support. Cena comes right back with the STF but Harper makes it into the ropes. The Usos take out Rowan and Bray but Wyatt pops up and hits a pair of Sister Abigails. He goes for Cena but gets low bridged, allowing Harper to hit a Michinoku Driver for another two. A quick AA connects but Rowan comes in for the DQ at 12:36.

Rating: C+. This was getting good but you knew there was no way Cena was jobbing here so there were only a few choices to end the match. Harper continues to look awesome in the ring as a power brawler and will certainly have a solid career once he’s no longer dealing with Bray anymore.

With the Usos down, Cena takes Sister Abigail as well and they take him up to the stage. Another Sister Abigail on the stage lays Cena out again. Bray sings while Harper slowly counts to ten to end the show.

Overall Rating: C. Stupid booking of midcard champions aside, this worked well enough for the first part. I really could have done without the bait and switch for the title announcement but that’s what you come to expect from WWE. There was some decent enough stuff tonight and the Evolution vs. Shield segment was great. It’s right in the middle so the average grade seems to fit.

Results
Cesaro b. Sheamus – German suplex
Big E. b. Ryback – Big Ending
Rusev b. Heath Slater – Accolade
Rob Van Dam b. Alberto Del Rio – Rollup
Seth Rollins b. Batista via DQ when HHH interfered
Alicia Fox b. Paige – Kick to the ribs
Dolph Ziggler vs. Mark Henry went to a time limit draw
John Cena b. Luke Harper via DQ when Erick Rowan interfered

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6 comments

  1. Jay Bird (Not Jay, Jay Bird) says:

    Only a C? I thought this show was the cock’s tits. Deserves at least an A-

  2. Jay H. (the real one) says:

    I love the London/UK Crowds they always make the Shows that much more fun. Some good Matches tonight as well and Payback is looking pretty good.

  3. Killjoy says:

    That’s hilarious. Not even Sheamus is safe from their terrible midcard champion booking.

    ted Reply:

    I told you Sheamus winning the u.s. title wasn’t going to mean anything. The secondary belts hell the primary belts mean nothing. There is no sense of urgency of wanting to win or keep the belt.

  4. Marky-Marc says:

    My buddy and I made a drinking game out of Sheamus/Cesaro: take a shot every time someone throws an uppercut. Made the rest of the show a lot better.

    Why are there reports that Adam Rose is considered a failure? The two weeks he was in the US he had the crowd cheering with his song. Is this just dirt sheet BS?

    klunderbunker Reply:

    I saw those too. I really don’t get them at all.