Monday Night Raw – July 28, 2014 (Full Version): Priorities
Date: July 28, 2014
Location: Toyota Center, Houston, Texas
Commentators: Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield, Jerry Lawler
We’re a week closer to Summerslam and the major match is already set. The interesting thing coming out of last week is Stephanie being arrested for her battery against Brie Bella last week. Other than that the stage is being set for Summerslam, including Reigns vs. Orton which should be announced soon. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of Brie and Stephanie’s issues from last week. I have a feeling they’re going to make this a far bigger deal than it should be. We also see Reigns attacking Orton and Brock being announced as the #1 contender. The latter two things are almost tacked on.
Here’s an upset Cena to get things going. He talks about how he’s usually excited to be here in Houston but he’s very worried about what’s coming. The Authority has marked him, and now he has to face the ultimate beast Brock Lesnar. Cena hoped it would never come to this, but now his nightmare has come to life. Brock Lesnar’s destruction is precise and he destroys what he wants, when he wants. Forty men have been WWE Champion but one man has defeated the Streak.
For once Heyman is telling the truth: at Summerslam, Cena will receive the beating of a lifetime. He’s going to get hurt but he’s going to fight. Cena beat Brock in 2012 and he can do it again here. No one can control Brock Lesnar. Not the people, not the Authority, and not Paul Heyman.
This brings out Heyman, with the fans saying the catchphrases along with him. Paul very slowly says that Brock will win the title at Summerslam, but he commends Cena for understanding that a beating is coming his way. However, the words about fighting are mighty strong from someone about to become a victim. Cena may have come back from beatings before but they’ve never been like this.
The Undertaker knows what it’s like to be a victim, but no one can ask him because no one has seen or heard from him since Wrestlemania. Cena is looking to survive, but Brock is looking to conquer. Brock doesn’t just want to F5 and pin John Cena. He wants to victimize him ruthlessly and mercilessly. Lesnar can’t wait for Cena to no longer be WWE Champion and be nothing more than beaten, victimized and conquered.
Cena wants to have a real talk for just a few seconds. Paul said the word passion and that’s a word that even he can understand. Every once in awhile, you can hear something start and then hear it grow louder and louder. It’s the fans chanting ECW and it brings a smile to Heyman’s face. Cena and Heyman share a passion about this business because it’s Cena’s life. Good, bad or indifferent, he shows up and fights because he loves it. Brock can beat him but he’s going to have to beat every breath out of his body because Cena is walking in champion and walking out.
This brings out Cesaro who says he may no longer be a Paul Heyman Guy, he won’t allow Cena to insult Paul like this. Cena isn’t a wrestler. He’s a muscled up walking billboard. Cena gets on the floor and Cesaro insults his shoes. Not only can Cena not wrestle in sneakers, but he can’t wrestle period. We get a challenge for a match and Cena is ready. The promos here were really good as you would expect from two masters like these guys.
Cesaro vs. John Cena
Non-title of course and joined in progress after a break. They fight over a test of strength to start until Cena takes him down into a headlock. Cesaro reverses into one of his own before catching Cena in a gutwrench suplex. Cena gets stomped down in the corner but comes back with a hurricanrana for two. His comeback is short lived though as he charges into an elbow, allowing Cesaro to hammer away. Some forearms put Cena on the floor but he comes back in and starts a brawl, only to have his bulldog shoved off.
Back from a break with Cena fighting out of a chinlock and hitting the shoulder blocks. Cesaro counters what looked like a backdrop into a DDT for two and Cena is down again. We get some very loud spot calling before the Swing is countered into a sunset flip for two. A powerbomb gets the same on Cesaro but he’s able to hit the apron suplex for two of his own. Cena tries a tornado DDT but gets countered into the Swing (so much for the reports of him being asked to stop).
Something resembling an ankle lock but with Cena’s legs intertwined has John in trouble but he rolls out and hits the Shuffle. The AA is countered and Cesaro goes up, only to have Cena roll through a cross body into the AA. Cesaro lands on his feet and kicks Cena in the face, setting up Swiss Death for two. Now the Neutralizer is countered but they trade big boots to send Cesaro to the apron. He takes too long going up though and a top rope AA is good for the pin at 14:00.
Rating: B. If you give Cesaro a big stage to have this match on and a better chance of winning, this is a near masterpiece. They have great chemistry together and Cesaro is one of the few guys that can show some freakish streak when he’s given the chance. I’d like to see him actually win a big match now and then though.
Stephanie is in the back freaking out about having to apologize to Brie tonight. She can’t bear the look in their daughters’ eyes again when they look at her. HHH says it’s going to be fine but Orton comes in to interrupt. Randy says the original plan was supposed to be Cena vs. Orton at Summerslam but Reigns broke it up. He wants HHH to break up the main event but HHH says no. If Orton wants another shot, take out Roman Reigns. Tonight, Reigns is facing Kane, so now Orton has a problem with Kane. He says he has a problem with HHH too.
Here’s the skipping Paige with something to say. She says her emotions get the better of her sometimes but she still thinks of AJ as her best friend. However, AJ took her title and crossed a line. Paige will never act that way again. Cue AJ who says she doesn’t like people who lie to her.
If Paige wants to be like her, then do it and stop making this stuff up. Paige cuts her off and talks about AJ being crazy, and that’s not ok with the champ. She tells Paige to say that again but Paige says this kind of stuff happens to everyone, even people off their rockers. AJ smacks Paige and the brawl is on with Paige running off and screaming that AJ needs to calm down.
Here are HHH and Stephanie to apologize about what happened last week. We see the full incident with Brie Bella and Stephanie says she’s truly sorry. All the charges have been dropped and they’re going to move on from this unfortunate incident. Stephanie would like Brie to come down here and clear the air. Instead here’s Jericho, who sings the COPS theme song (which might be a reference to the joke about COPS reruns replacing Impact).
HHH growls at him but Jericho cuts him off and brings up HHH not coming to Stephanie’s aide until Raw had been over for fifteen minutes. Jericho says it’s because HHH is finally realizing that Stephanie is a filthy, dirty, bottom feeding trashbag ho. HHH yells but Jericho asks for Bray Wyatt tonight. That match is being saved until Summerslam, but as for tonight…..and HHH is cut off by Seth Rollins nailing Jericho in the head with the MITB briefcase. I still think they missed a HUGE story by never having Stephanie and Jericho fall for each other.
We recap the Heyman/Cena/Cesaro stuff.
Ad for Summerslam 1998 airing this Sunday night on the WWE Network. I don’t know why they’re doing this when you can watch it right this second on demand on the Network.
Usos/Dolph Ziggler vs. Miz/Ryback/Curtis Axel
Miz is in his sunglasses. Woods, Kofi and Big E. are all watching in the back. Dolph gets knocked down by Ryback for two early on. Everything breaks down for a bit and the Usos chase all three guys to the floor as we take a break. Back with Miz coming in to kick Jimmy in the ribs as Woods and company have come to ringside. Axel gets two off a running knee to the head and it’s back to Miz to work on the ribs.
The Reality Check is countered into a suplex but Jimmy still can’t make the tag. He finally kicks Miz away and the tag brings in Ziggler to dropkick Ryback. The Fameasser gets two and Miz makes a very last second save. Everything breaks down and Jey dives onto Axel. Jimmy charges into a neck snap across the top rope to take him to the floor. Miz distracts Ziggler but Dolph counters a Ryback powerbomb into the Zig Zag for the pin at 10:12.
Rating: C. Just an easy way to combine a few matches here and there’s nothing wrong with that. I’m glad Miz didn’t get pinned again, but I’m not sure why the new Nation is at ringside. Miz continues to play his role well and I’m digging the new character. Then again I’ve always been a Miz fan.
R-Truth vs. Bo Dallas
Bo says that Truth has lost a lot but will win again if he Bolieves. Dallas does his usual stuff and hits a clothesline before running a victory lap. Back in and Truth rolls him up for the pin at 32 seconds for Bo’s first loss.
Post match Bo says he can’t Bolieve that and nails Truth. The beating stays on
Here are Lana and Rusev to do their thing, this time with a focus on the American flag. Lana is about to insult George W. Bush (from Texas) but here’s Colter to interrupt. He talks about the American flag meaning something everywhere in the world. Colter brings up the Stars and Stripes and the symbolism behind them before Rusev and Swagger have their usual fight with Rusev being run off. The fans give a LOUD USA chant.
Damien Sandow vs. Adam Rose
Sandow is an astronaut this week. He gets cut off by Rose and pinned in 36 seconds with the Party Foul. Nothing to see here.
Kane vs. Roman Reigns
Reigns is on the way to the ring but Orton jumps him in the crowd. Reigns takes over and heads into the ring for a Superman Punch to Orton, but walks into a chokeslam. Kane leaves and Orton hammers away with free shots on Reigns. He nails an Elevated DDT on the floor and rams Reigns’ head into the steps over and over. An RKO onto the announcers’ table (didn’t break) has Reigns down and a second RKO through the table knocks him senseless. The bell never rang so no match.
Back from a break and Reigns is still trying to get up.
Fandango vs. Diego
Diego has Layla and Summer as sexy bullfighters this week. Fandango hammers away and goes up for the legdrop but Torito gets up on the apron for a distraction. The dancer goes after him but the bull dives onto the girls’ shoulders. Diego hits a springboard spinning sunset flip for the pin at 1:30.
Stephanie tries to find Brie in the Divas locker room but gets Nikki instead. Brie is going to be here later and Stephanie hopes things will be reasonable. Nikki laughs at the idea.
The Dusts are at a chalkboard and trying to figure out what the Cosmic Key is. Goldust says calm down and points Stardust off into the distance. He writes THEY HAVE “IT” in for the answer to the question. No idea what that means.
Alicia Fox/Cameron vs. Natalya/Naomi
Natalya and Fox get things going with the blonde nailing a seated dropkick for an early two. Naomi dives at Cameron for a brawl but Fox nails an ax kick for two. Fox hammers on her for a bit before it’s back to Cameron, who is caught in a freaky looking body scissors for the submission at 2:33. This was nothing.
Chris Jericho vs. Seth Rollins
They quickly fight to the floor with Jericho getting in trouble, only to block a suicide dive with a right hand. Back in and a suplex gets two on Seth but he stomps on Chris in the corner. Jericho jumps over him and nails an enziguri for two on Rollins, only to have Seth dropkick him down. Jericho snaps his neck over the ropes and we take a break.
Back with Jericho fighting out of a chinlock but being sent shoulder first into the post. Seth talks trash about him but Chris fights back and nails a top rope ax handle for two. A Slingblade gets two on Jericho and Rollins goes up, only to have to block some superplex attempts.
Rollins tries a powerbomb but gets countered into a top rope backdrop followed by a high cross body for two. Rollins gets elbowed in the face but avoids the Lionsault and nails a buckle bomb. The Curb Stomp misses but Rollins gets to the ropes to escape the Walls. Rollins goes up but gets caught in a Codebreaker….and we’ve got Wyatts for the DQ at 13:20.
Rating: C+. Another good match from these two but the ending was somewhat obvious. They need to make the Wyatts look tough again though and beating up Jericho is a good way to start. However, without a huge win at Summerslam it doesn’t really matter. Bray can still be saved though.
Here’s Stephanie for the big showdown with Brie to end the show. She looks at the clip from last week and apologizes to Brie again. Brie comes from the crowd to the ring and says she wants some revenge. Stephanie offers to give Nikki a raise but Brie wants her job back. The boss isn’t sure but Brie offers to drop all of the charges. Stephanie agrees but Brie wants something else: a match at Summerslam.
That’s fine with Stephanie who offers her a Divas Title shot or a Total Divas Spectacular. Brie says the obvious: she wants a match with Stephanie. The boss freaks out and says she isn’t a wrestler anymore (too easy) before finally saying she won’t lower herself to do this. Brie says she’ll see Stephanie in court. Stephanie finally breaks down and agrees before slapping Brie off the apron. The brawl is on but HHH and agents break it up. Fans: “THIS IS AWFUL!” I’m fine with the match taking place, but there is NO reason this should have closed the show.
Overall Rating: D. Other than the two long matches, this felt like a long series of short vignettes with very little going on. I don’t get the idea of Dallas losing in a meaningless match but it might be better to get it out of the way rather than letting him get crushed later on. The rest of the show felt pretty worthless, with one thing really glaring.
This show opened with a pretty awesome promo from Cena and a good match, but ended with a segment involving Brie Bella and Stephanie McMahon. I’m fine with Stephanie and Brie having a match at Summerslam, but it REALLY shouldn’t be a feature. Unless Bryan is in Brie’s corner, this really does feel like the most useless match I’ve seen built up in a very long time.
John Cena b. Cesaro – Top rope Attitude Adjustment
Dolph Ziggler/Usos b. Ryback/Curtis Axel/The Miz – Zig Zag to Ryback
R-Truth b. Bo Dallas – Rollup
Adam Rose b. Damien Sandow – Party Foul
Diego b. Fandango – Spinning sunset flip
Natalya/Naomi b. Alicia Fox/Cameron – Leg scissors to Cameron
Chris Jericho b. Seth Rollins via DQ when the Wyatt Family interfered
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