Week of 4/7/2014 - 4/13/2014 (Monday - Wednesday)
Undertaker has been hospitalized due to a severe concussion and possible neck injury. This did not effect the outcome of his match last night.
Billy Gunn was coughing up blood after his match last night but the injury doesn't seem to be serious.
Ezekiel Jackson is gone from WWE as his contract expired yesterday.
Monday Night Raw
Date: April 7, 2014
Location: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, Louisiana
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, John Bradshaw Layfield
It's the night after one of the best show in years and the big question is where do they go from here? For the first time ever, Undertaker is coming off a loss at Wrestlemania in what very well may be his last match. Other than that we've got a new WWE World Heavyweight Champion in the form of a goat man. Tonight is usually one of the most fun shows of the year. Let's get to it.
As you might have heard, I was in the arena for the show so this is my second viewing. It's being written the Wednesday after so a lot of things have changed.
We open with the Monster video on Daniel Bryan's career that aired at Wrestlemania. The song fits so perfectly. The video eats up nearly five minutes but it's awesome.
The arena is filled with the YES chant and here's Daniel Bryan to drive it them even harder. Bryan is wearing the World Heavyweight Championship and has the WWE Championship in his hand. I wish they would just get rid of one already. Even JBL admits that Daniel Bryan is an A+ player. The music stops and the DANIEL BRYAN chant begins. They go on so long that Bryan asks if the people ever get tired. The fans switch into the NO chant and Bryan says be careful that you don't hit the people next to you.
The YES chant starts again and Bryan joins in but says after this his shoulders need a break. Daniel talks about starting the pose two years ago and now everyone in the WWE Universe is united under one word. He's cut off again by a YOU DESERVE IT chant and you can see Daniel is getting overwhelmed by the reaction. He says he deserves it a little bit but the fans deserve the rest. The YES stuff isn't about a movement or anything else, but about the power the fans have to make a change. It gave him the chance to stand up to the Authority and now he is the WWE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION.
The fans strike up the band one more time but here are HHH and Stephanie (in a very nice black dress) to interrupt. They stand on the apron and the fans aren't pleased with HHH. Cole: “It's going to be one of those nights.” HHH says he isn't going to step into the ring because he doesn't want to do something he's going to regret. Bryan: “You're not getting in the ring? Hang on a second.” Bryan gets right in his face and starts another YES chant in a great bit. The boss says enjoy this while you can, because tonight Bryan is defending against HHH himself. HHH throws the mic down so hard the cube falls off and we get a final chant.
After a break HHH and Stephanie are in the back and talking about how great tonight is going to be. Batista comes in and says he wants his rematch because it's HHH's fault that Bryan was in the main event. He says he earned a one on one shot at the title but Orton comes in and says he wants his rematch tonight. HHH says he himself is getting the shot but the other two will at some point. Stephanie gives them a Tag Team Title shot as a consolation prize. HHH reminds them that when they work together, things go their way.
Wyatt Family vs. Big E./John Cena/Sheamus
The fans clap along to the Wyatts' song. The good guys come out after a break, during which a video aired about WWE's issues with cars over the years. Seeing the Wyatts stand in the ring and watch was rather odd to see. Cena is of course absolutely LOATHED by the smarky crowd but he smirks it off. In something that is going to catch on fast, the fans chant JOHN CENA SUCKS in time to his music. It's a brawl to start until we get down to Cena vs. Bray. A big right hand drops Cena and the fans go NUTS. Cena comes back and you would think he lit Santa Claus on fire.
Sheamus comes in off the tag and stomps away in the corner to a slightly less hateful reaction. The fans chant for Bryan before chanting for Erick Rowan who comes in off the tag. A running forearm drops Erick into the corner and he hammers away with right hands, only to be shoved down to the mat. Sheamus fights back with a knee to the side of the head and it's off to Big E.
The champ picks up Rowan for three straight backbreakers, drawing the ONLY face pop of the match for his team. Off to Harper, who accidentally runs into Rowan to knock him off the apron. Cena comes back in for a quick Protobomb and the Shuffle (minus the run). An AA doesn't work so Harper slams him face first into the mat for two. Bray gets the tag and we take a break.
Back with Cena fighting out of a Harper chinlock as the fans chant for the Family. He still can't get the AA though and Harper drops him with a DDT for two. Rowan comes back in for a legdrop as the fans sing He's Got The Whole World In His Hands. Wyatt stomps a mudhole until John fights up with a hard clothesline. You can actually hear a TINY Let's Go Cena chant but the singing drowns it out again.
Bray headbutts him down and it's back to Harper for some uppercuts. Cena fights up and makes the tag off to Sheamus to clean house. The rolling fireman's carry puts Harper onto Rowan but a Wyatt distraction breaks up the Brogue. Back to Big E. as everything breaks down. Big E. loads up the Big Ending on Bray but Harper breaks it up with a nice looking superkick. Harper hits a suicide dive to take out Sheamus and the place goes NUTS. Bray spider walks out of the corner (Lawler: “CALL YOUR LOCAL EXORCIST!”) and gets a Wyatt's Gonna Kill You chant, setting up Sister Abigail on Big E. for the pin at 10:30 shown at 13:14.
Slam City ad.
Bo Dallas vignette, with Dallas playing something like a motivational speaker. “It's not pronounced impossible, but I'M POSSIBLE.” The fans liked the idea of this, even though it took awhile to get to the reveal of who it was.
Fandango/Summer Rae vs. Emma/Santino Marella
Summer looks great in blue. The guys get things going with a quick dance off but Fandango quickly runs from the Cobra. Off to the girls and Summer is quickly caught in the Dilemma followed by the Emmamite Sandwich (zero need to change the name) and the Emma Lock (bridging Indian Deathlock) for the submission at 1:30. This was just a way to showcase Emma.
Here are Lesnar and Heyman for the ultimate bragging session. Heyman bows down to Brock to just drive the crowd even crazier. JBL brings up the comparison to Bruno losing the title to Koloff and that's really the only thing you can compare the Streak to. Paul introduces himself and says he's glad to represent the conqueror of the Streak. Brock has a nasty looking black eye.
Heyman talks about the Streak lasting nearly a quarter of a century before being broken in three seconds. The fans are LIVID which Heyman says is a lack of intelligence. He hates to say we told you so, but WE TOLD YOU SO! How could anyone doubt Heyman's mind or Brock's physical attributes? Brock isn't here to make people smile. Instead he's here to shock the WWE Universe and put tears in the eyes of children.
If that's not great enough, Heyman wants to shoot a bit. Five seconds after Undertaker walked through the curtain, Undertaker collapsed (apparently a true story). He was taken to the hospital and Vince McMahon went with him instead of staying for the main event of Wrestlemania. Undertaker is lucky that he was pinned so soon, because Brock wasn't stopping until the Streak was dead.
What really gets to Heyman is that after the match was over, “John Bradshaw Layfield and those other two things called announcers, plus 80,000 other people in the Super Dome Hogan, not the Silver Dome, gave Undertaker a standing ovation.” However they should have been chanting the winner. That brings him to tonight. This is supposed to be the wildest crowd of the year and every member of this audience is just like the WWE locker room: they're all wannabes.
Everyone back there wants to be Brock Lesnar but Brock doesn't like anyone. “He barely tolerates me!” Brock isn't going to suck up to a bunch of people that fly in once a year for Raw after Wrestlemania. A lot of people say they could have broken the Streak, but BROCK did it. A lot of people wanted to fight in the Octagon and be the UFC Champion but BROCK did it. A lot of people wanted to be the NCAA Heavyweight Champion but BROCK did it. Everyone else is a wannabe because BROCK LESNAR is the one.
A lot of people came up to Heyman last night and said they could have broken the Streak. “Yeah? Well why didn't you?” BROCK did, and he's the 1 in 21-1. Heyman hears a WHTA chant so he slows down and repeats the 1 in 21-1 line. There are legends, Superstars and Hall of Famers. All of them are plural though, and there's just one BROCK LESNAR. This was one of the best promos ever and Heyman just owned the audience and the locker room. I kept waiting for someone to come out and confront him, but I'm glad no one did. This needed to be all about Brock for the night, not setting up anything else just yet.
Adam Rose and his party bus are coming. The fans ate this up with a spoon. It's another example of a character that is different and the fans responded to it faster than another version of “cocky heel that is better than you” or “plucky face that just wants to compete.” It's a character rather than a gimmick and that's always going to work.
Tag Team Titles: Randy Orton/Batista vs. Usos
The twins are defending. Something that took a little getting used to this weekend: seeing the Usos just standing there during the previous entrance. I knew they were there due to how the entrances worked but it looks odd in person. Batista draws the YOU TAPPED OUT chants but easily takes Jimmy into the corner for a tag off to Randy. Jimmy fires back with some right hands but Orton headbutts him back. The fans are already bored and start a Y2J chant, followed by one for CM Punk, Justin Roberts and JBL. The Usos are sent to the floor and destroyed until it's a double countout at 2:15.
Orton hits an Elevated DDT on the floor to Jimmy and Batista nails a LOUD Batista Bomb to Jey on the steps. They were smart to keep this one short before the fans took things over again. I would have preferred it wasn't against the champions though.
Damien Sandow vs. Rob Van Dam
Van Dam got a nice reaction but it wasn't deafening. A quick kick sends Sandow outside but he comes back in with some forearms to the back and shoulders in the corner. Another kick to the face puts Sandow on the apron and a third sends him to the floor. Sandow is draped over the barricade for the spinning kick to the back and the fans think Rob still has it. Back in and Rolling Thunder sets up the Five Star for the pin at 2:49. Just a return squash.
Rey Mysterio vs. Bad News Barrett
Barrett gets one of the loudest pops of the night for his first match since late last year. The fans chant for Barrett right after the bell and he grabs the mic for the catchphrase, only to get nailed by some forearms, making Rey a heel for the night. A headscissors sends Barrett to the floor and Rey hits the sliding splash under the bottom rope. Back in and Barrett counters a headscissors and kicks Rey in the stomach to take over.
An OLE chant starts and Barrett gets two off the Winds of Change. Barrett nails him with a running knee in the corner but Rey breaks up a superplex attempt. A headscissors doesn't work for Rey but he nails a spinning DDT for two, followed by the 619. Rey goes up but gets crotched down, setting up the Bull Hammer for the pin at 3:50.
Video on Alexander Rusev.
Another Adam Rose video, taking him inside his bus. “This is my current ex-girlfriend, and this is my future ex-girlfriend.” He also says you need little people to have a big party and that he loves bunnies because they hop. This is going to get over in a hurry.
Alexander Rusev vs. Zack Ryder
Lana is officially named the Ravishing Russian. That won't last but she looks good in the short skirts. This is exactly what you would expect (plus a nice jumping kick to the face) and ends in 1:19 after the Accolade (Camel clutch) with Ryder tapping very quickly.
Hall of Fame video.
And now for the part that is hard to watch. The Ultimate Warrior comes to the ring with a rather red face. He certainly looks to be in good spirits though. Warrior puts on a coat like he used to wear back in the day and does the rope shake a few times but already looks blown up. He says it's been hard for him to find the words to say this evening so he pulls out a Warrior mask to get into old form.
Warrior tells Warrior (yes that's right) to shut up and let him do the talking. He talks about no one becoming a legend on their own because everyone's heart beats their last beat and they breathe their last breath. However, no one's memory is ever forgotten because the storytellers will carry their spirit on forever. The fans are the legend makers of the Ultimate Warrior. He sees some in the back with the Warrior Spirit and they can make those people legends as well. The spirit of the Warrior will run forever. That's absolutely chilling as he would be gone less than 24 hours later.
We get a cool video on all of the work and equipment that it takes to broadcast Raw. However, none of it would be possible without the fans. This drew a WE ARE AWESOME chant in the arena.
Here are AJ and Tamina with something to say. AJ talks about being the Divas Champion for 295 days, which is the longest reign ever. Several months back she tore the Divas a new one and no one has been able to prove them wrong. Last night she showed why she's the hero of this story because it was AJ Lee vs. the world and she overcame the odds again. She was a poor girl in New Jersey to being the best Diva in the world.
AJ has to pause for a CM Punk chant before saying she is the Divas division.....and here's the debuting Paige. The fans absolutely love her but AJ wants to know why she's here. Paige says she's here to do what no one else would: congratulate her for her win. AJ says every Diva should be doing that but she doesn't need the congratulations. Paige needs to go running back to NXT because AJ doesn't need to hear this. AJ calls her sweet and offers her a match right now. Paige says she isn't ready and gets slapped in the face for her efforts. AJ says ring the bell and let's make it a title match for fun.
Divas Title: AJ Lee vs. Paige
AJ jumps her to start and hammers away before parading around the ring. Paige powers out of the Black Widow (despite slapping AJ's leg which looked a lot like tapping) and mostly botches the Paige Turner (kind of a snap reverse Angle Slam) but gets the pin and the title at 1:18. The place went NUTS at the pinfall and AJ has no idea what to do.
Another Bo Dallas vignette.
Here's Hulk Hogan for the Andre trophy presentation. He gets the building name right to an approving reaction and talks about what a great Wrestlemania moment the battle royal was. Hogan knew Andre was smiling when Cesaro won and says the battle royal will keep going every year. Apparently there were 31 men in the battle royal last night and here's the one that survived.
Cesaro comes out in a shiny jacket with Zeb Colter by his side. Hogan shakes his hand, congratulates Cesaro and actually leaves without saying anything else. Zeb takes the mic and says a real American should do the talking. He promises to give the mic back to Cesaro in a minute so Cesaro can “say what kind of a guy he really is.” Cesaro is a guy who was invited into the Real Americans fold ten months ago. He made Cesaro a Zeb Colter Guy but Cesaro takes the mic. “I'm sorry Zeb. I'm a Zeb Colter Guy. I'm a Paul Heyman Guy.” The fans take a second to realize what they heard and start up the YES chant.
Heyman comes out with a big smile on his face and says he's now the advocate for the King of Swing, Cesaro. Colter is livid as Heyman shakes Cesaro's hand. Heyman calls Zeb grandpa and says this is a shocking week for Paul Heyman Guys. Paul heads outside to tell the announcers (including another JBL and those other guys comment) how to address the King of Swing. The fans chant the new nickname as Swagger hits the ring to attack Cesaro and BREAK THE TROPHY. Cesaro goes after him and we go to a break.
During the break, Brad Maddox came out and said clean up the mess so we can have a match. The crew came in to clean things up and a guy with a broom swept out the ring. The fans gave him a “Let's go sweeper!” chant and he even gave a fist pump when he was done. It was a little thing but gave us a nice moment nonetheless.
Cesaro vs. Jack Swagger
Back with Cesaro fighting up and hitting a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. Heyman is holding the Andre statue, minus its right leg. Swagger tries to leave but gets kicked in the ribs and thrown back into the ring. Cesaro goes up top but Jack runs the corner and suplexes him down to take over.
Jack cranks on both arms for a bit but gets caught by some European uppercuts. A powerslam gets two on Cesaro but the Vader Bomb hits feet (Swagger landed one during the break). Cesaro nails the superplex from the apron and some running uppercuts in the corner. He loads up the Swing but Jack runs away for the countout at 5:15.
We recap the opening segment.
Stephanie is in the back with Shield and Kane. Her orders for the night are to make sure HHH leaves with the WWE Title because this was an injustice. Rollins says that's fine but wants to know where the Outlaws are. Ambrose thinks they're gone for good but Kane isn't pleased. He goes on a rant about how expendable Shield is before running his mouth too much, revealing that HHH ordered the attack on them a few weeks ago. Stephanie goes back to the injustice line and says what HHH wants, he gets.
WWE World Heavyweight Title: HHH vs. Daniel Bryan
The title now has YES plates. Instead of HHH, here are Batista and Orton. They surround the ring and beat Bryan down with both guys hitting their finishers. Kane comes out to add a chokeslam and here's HHH. He demands the bell ring but like any villain, he takes his time and the Shield is here for the save. Why HHH didn't cover Bryan while they were heading to the ring is anyone's guess. The “match” officially started but we'll call it a no contest at about eight seconds.
Shield gets on one side of the ring while Orton/Kane/Batista are on the other. The fans chant HOUNDS OF JUSTICE while HHH says don't do it. He says this isn't going to be a war but walks into the spear and it's on. Rollins and Ambrose lay out Orton and Batista with dives (Ambrose's mostly missed) and HHH is all alone. Bryan is getting up and with the YES chant going through the roof, it's a running knee to the boss to end the show.
The post show scene was excellent as well with Shield all saying the Believe line and Bryan giving a very emotional speech about how he's living his dream because of all the fans. WWE played a video that was made by people you'll never see in front of a camera, but he thanked the crowd personally, nearly breaking down in tears.
Wyatt Family b. John Cena/Sheamus/Big E. – Sister Abigail to Big E.
Emma/Santino Marella b. Fandango/Summer Rae – Emma Lock to Summer
Usos vs. Randy Orton/Batista went to a double countout
Rob Van Dam b. Damien Sandow – Five Star Frog Splash
Bad News Barrett b. Rey Mysterio – Bull Hammer
Alexander Rusev b. Zack Ryder – Accolade
Paige b. AJ Lee – Paige Turner
Cesaro b. Jack Swagger via countout
Raw got a 3.7, the highest post Wrestlemania rating in three years.
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