KELLER'S TAKE KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT 8/10: Results, thoughts, observations, nitpicks, quotebook
Aug 10, 2009 - 10:15:49 PM
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BY WADE KELLER, PWTORCH EDITOR
KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT
AUGUST 10, 2009
LIVE FROM CALGARY, ALB.
AIRED ON USA NETWORK
-The show opened with Randy Orton walking to the ring. They saved some bucks this week by skipping pyro. Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler introduced the show. Lawler got in his usual dig at Canada fans for being weird right in the first seconds of the show. Orton took about two minutes to say he bullied Jeremy Piven last week because he's a bully and proud of it, he doesn't answer to the fans who are beneath me, and he guaranteed he will beat John Cena at SummerSlam. Cena's music then interrupted. Cena gave him the Death Stare, then snarled and lied, saying every week Orton talks about truth and facts (he doesn't talk about that every week, actually). He said that makes him angry. He said he's tired of him walking around like he thinks the business owes him something and he's tired of him bullying people. He got in his face and turned the intensity to 10. Or maybe even 11. He asked Orton if he's going to keep talking or do something about it. JeriShow's music interrupted and out walked Big Show and Chris Jericho.
Big Show said it's funny watching Orton and Cena try to intimidate each other since he just breaths on someone and they're intimidated. Jericho, who was cheered by the crowd, told Cena that he talked to Sgt. Slaughter and asked for and received a one-on-one match against him. Cena pointed out that Jericho moved from Canada to the U.S. to try to quiet the cheers. Orton threatened to punt Cena's skull later. Show said Orton should know something. He said the reason Jericho got his match against Cena is he was standing next to him. Show said he wants people to forget about Shaq, so he beat up Kofi Kingston. He said tonight he wants war, which is why tonight he's facing Orton. The crowd cheered. JerichoShow's music mix then played.
-Sgt. Slaughter appeared on the screen and yelled at viewers and stuck his chin out.
-Lawler plugged that Triple H had ventured to Texas to look for his "long-lost tag team partner," Shawn Michaels. [c]
(1) Gail Kim defeated Beth Phoenix, Kelly Kelly, and Alicia in 4:00 to earn a future Diva's Title shot. They went into a series of slightly contrived but fast-paced near falls with roll-ups. Phoenix got upset when Alicia knocked her down as she had Kim and Kelly Kelly lifted at once on her shoulders. Kim dove onto Alicia after Phoenix knocked Alicia to the floor. Kelly dove onto both Alicia and Kim seconds later. Phoenix climbed to the top. Cole said we'd never seen this before. Lawler and Cole were impressed with Kim's finisher, where she dropped down with her leg extended and knocked Alicia's face into her boot. They packed a lot into four minutes. Frenzied high-energy match, but it felt more rushed than dramatic because of the limited time they were given. Nice to see Gail Kim moved into a top contender position. She's draw if pushed right. (*1/2)
-Slaughter walked out onto the stage to almost no ovation, including scattered boos. Odd time to choose him to be guest G.M. since they're in Canada. Sarge tried to fix that by saying it's his honor to stand in front of proud Canadians. He said he respects his neighbor to the north. He said he wanted to lead the crowd in a salute to the Canadian flag. He does know Canadian's die every day waiting in line every day for government-run medical treatment, right? Oh, apparently he does. He added, "But then I realized if it wasn't for Uncle Sam and the good ol' U.S. of A., all of you Canadians would be speaking Russian and French right now. Most of you speak French already. It's embarrassing." He demanded they pledge allegiance to the U.S. Is this supposed to elicit cheers or boos from U.S. viewers? Cole and Lawler didn't let on whether U.S. viewers were supposed to see Sarge as a jerk or speaking the hard truth. [c]
-They threw to footage from last week of Triple H deciding to recruit Shawn Michaels after losing to Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes last week. Cole and Lawler plugged that Triple H found out that Michaels has a new profession and they'd reveal that later.
(2) Jack Swagger pinned Evan Bourne in 3:00. Swagger won with his finisher, the gut-wrench powerbomb. Bourne got in a lot offense, but a three minute clean loss establishes that Swagger is the dominant wrestler of the two. (*1/4)
Afterward, Swagger took the mic and said his name. Then MVP's music interrupted. He called Swagger an idiot with a lisp. He said he wasn't blessed with a trust fund like he was, but he was blessed with the ability to beat him in the ring. He challenged him to a match tonight. Swagger said, "Maybe... next week." He smiled. MVP shoved him to the mat. Swagger rolled out of the ring as an "MVP" chant began. [c]
They went to Triple H on his cell phone at an office building cafeteria. He asked him if he ribbing him or put him on a wild goose chase. Triple H walked up to a guy wearing a long blond wig in a pony tail. Triple H approached him as if he was fooled, which was slapstick and ridiculous. The guy turned around and smiled at Hunter in a "gay way," and then hit on him, saying he gets off work at seven. It got some laughs. Triple H said, "Yeah, I bet you do." That comeback by Triple H was kinda funny, but otherwise it was pretty embarrassingly bad, as in 1984-level gay humor. (And there's no gay waiters in the world who'd have a pony tail.) He told him to "enjoy his weenie." A girl at the cafeteria counter rang a bell over and over and yelled, "I want my hamburger and I want it now" over and over, again in a very slapstick way. Michaels showed up and told her that she needs to be patient so he can cook her hamburger on both sides. He seemed on the midst of a nervous breakdown while trying to deal with her. Michaels said, "Bring your daughter to work day. Brilliant idea!" Triple H walked up to him. Michaels said, "Hi Hunter." He smiled and walked away. Cole forced laughter, which he's paid to do. Lawler just looked confused. Cole plugged that Triple H will be on Jimmy Fallon tomorrow night.
-Sarge stepped onto the stage and said he was going to have Celine Dion sing the Canadian National Anthem, but he couldn't find her, so he found someone better. Out came Jillian Hall who sang "Oh Canada." She, of course, sang it poorly.
-A commercial aired with Vince McMahon and Eve talking about what they'd call Monk if he were created as a character in WWE. He'd be the Moninator and his finishing move would be called The Clean Sweep, and he's afraid of crowds, sweat, and touching. And giants. And in walked The Great Khali. That's the kind of skit that's funny to network executives who don't like wrestling, don't get wrestling, and think it's silly and it's fans are stupid, but they're trying really hard to "get it." [c]
(3) The Calgary Kid defeated Eugene in 2:00. Lilain Garcia announced before the match that this is a WWE Contract on a Pole match. The winner gets a job on Raw back. Eugene was already in the ring. "Calgary Kid" was the opponent. Cole said he Googled "Calgary Kid" and found out a little about him. He said the only thing he found out is there was a TV show called "Range Rider and the Calgary Kid." That's all he found out. Couldn't he, with backstage access and all, interview him or the people who hired him to find out more? Are his resources the same as a 12 year old with a laptop? Eugene emulated The Rock early with the whole People's Elbow sequence. He trid to reach the contract from the first rope, then the second rope, and by the time he got to the third rope, Calgary Kid cut him off. Calgary kid knocked him down and grabbed the contract to earn a job. The crowd was so dismayed by the rest of the show, they barely cheered their hometown masked wrestler winning. Kid slammed Eugene to the mat and then unmasked, revealing he is Miz. He stood on the announce table and said, "I am Miz and I am awesome!"
-They showed Orton heading to the entrance tunnel for his match against The Big Show. [c]
(4) The Big Show defeated The Big Show via countout in 6:00. Show methodically beat on Orton at the start. As with Jericho & Show vs. DiBiase & Rhodes at the Night of Champions, the crowd was just sort of passively watching. Orton used a thumb to the eyes and a dropkick to Show's shoulder to stop his momentum. He then hit a DDT off the second rope for a two count. Show blocked an RKO attempt and then signaled for a chokeslam and delivered it. That was good for a two count, as Orton draped his leg over the bottom rope. When Show went for another chokeslam, Orton rolled out of the ring and retreated, getting counted out on purpose. (*3/4)
-Back to Chef Michaels and Hunter. Hunter asked if he's a cook. Michaels corrected him and said he's a chef. He said they don't just give chef hats out to anyone. Michaels said after WrestleMania was over, he said he felt like he didn't need it anymore. Triple H said, "So you became a chef for a bunch of corporate nimrods." Hunter then turned to two guys in shirts and ties and said, "Sorry, no offense." Michaels said they're like brothers to him. He said they're like brothers to him now and they respect him. The girl came up to him and said, "These tater tots suck and my dad's the vice president, so shape up, monkey." She threw the tater tots at him. Michaels said it's a paradise, so why would leave it. Hunter said the Legacy thing is out of control, Rhodes and DiBiase are driving him crazy. MIchaels said he doesn't want to hear it. He said he's happy now and, more importantly, he's really good at what he does. As soon as he said that, his grill caught on fire. Triple H said, "Really, Chef Boy-R-D?" Yes, he really said Chef Boy-R-D as a laugh line. Michaels freaked out and put the fire out with an extinguisher. He came back and his face was blackened like in the Looney-Toon cartoons. Michaels then said, "All right, I'll listen." I promise you, if anyone else did this skit, Triple H would be in back, watching on the monitor, shaking his head and mocking it unmercifully. [c]
-WWE Fact: WWE.com had more visitors and pageviews than the websites for UFC, NFL, NHL, SI, and NASCAR.
(5) MVP pinned Chris Masters in 3:00. Master got in early offense. MVP made a comeback at 2:00. Masters tried to apply the Masterlock out of nowhere. MVP, though, slipped out and hit the Playmaker for the sudden win. Masters is right back where he left off on his previous WWE run, barely a notch higher than Charlie Haas and Snitsky territory on the depth chart.
-Swagger walked out and stared down MVP from ringside. Masters applied the Masterlock from behind,then dropped MVP so Swagger could give him his gut-wrench powerbomb.
-A clip aired of Jimmy Piven on "Regis & Kelly" and Piven and Dr. Ken on the Jimmy Fallon "Late Nite" show, recapping Cena tossing him out of the ring. Ken said he was more emotionally hurt than physically hurt, but vowed revenge. Cole said Ken and Piven had a blast. They plugged the Cena vs. Jericho main event. [c]
-Back to Michaels and Triple H. Hunter was helping Michaels now. Hunter tried to give him a pep talk into returning to the ring. Michaels told Hunter to put an apron and hat on because it's the law. Hunter dropped a burger patty on the floor, but picked it up and threw it back on the grill. They made a crack about SummerFest and SummerSlam. Michaels's boss barged in and called Michaels "Hickenbottom." Triple H asked, "What kind of name is that." Michaels said he needed pseudonym to protect his anonymity. The bossman called Triple H an idiot and chewed out Michaels for yelling at a little girl earlier. He said guys like Michaels are a dime a dozen. Michaels superkicked the guy and then a bunch of sound effects played of trays and pans being knocked over. Michaels looked at Triple H said, "I'm in." They did the "If you're not into that, we've got two words for you." An older woman walked into the picture and said, "Suck it." When the girl began complaining again about the food and threatening to have her dad fire all of them, Michaels walked up to her. She said, "What do you want?" He then simulated superkicking her. Lettuce flew into the picture, although Michaels actually kicking the 12ish year old girl wasn't shown. Amazing. Michaels exclaimed, "I quit!"
-They went to ringside where Cole and Lawler were chuckling. Lawler said Michaels just told his boss to take that job and shove it. Cole then revealed the answer to a trivia question: Whom did Slaughter defeat to win the WWE Championship? 51 percent picked the right answer, Ultimate Warrior. Lawler said he guessed Randy Savage.
-Sarge walked back out onto the stage. He thanked the fans for being great sports. He said he had his fun poking fun at Canada and Canadians, "but the simple truth is we're all part of one great place, and that great place is the WWE Universe." He said it doesn't matter what country you're from. He said as a token of his appreciation, he wanted to bring out a guest, someone they haven't seen in a long time. He said it'd be a great time to bring this guy back. He said, "Please welcome back the best there is, the best there was, the best there ever will be." Bret Hart's music played. The fans seemed largely skeptical. Some were applauding. Cole bought into it like a sucker and exclaimed, "What a night!" Then Hacksaw Duggan walked out instead waving the American flag. Do Canadian fans attending Raw today really care that much about Bret Hart? I mean, we're a dozen years past the whole controversy. [c]
-ECW tomorrow night featured Christian on The Abraham Washington Show.
-Mark Henry and Hornswoggle walked out to take on Chavo Guerrero and a partner of his choosing. Chavo, though, walked out onto the stage and said the match won't happen because his injuries from last week haven't healed yet. He said he found a replacement tag team to face them. He wished them luck. Out came Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase.
(6) Ted DiBiase & Cody Rhodes defeated Mark Henry & Hornswoggle in 3:00. Henry powerslammed DiBiase, but when Hornswoggle went for the Tadpole Splash, DiBiase moved. Rhodes knocked Henry off the ring apron, and then DiBiase gave Hornswoggle the Dream Street finisher for the win.
-Afterward, DiBiase and Rhodes talked on the stage about the reformation of DX. DiBiase said they're not scared. DiBiase said they're ready to face DX at SummerSlam in what will be the shortest comeback in WWE history. Rhodes said, "If you're not down with that, well, then we've got two words for ya'. Too bad."
-Josh Matthews interviewed Jericho backstage. He asked him about facing Cena later. Jericho predicted that he'd beat Cena for the first time ever in the city where he lived for seven years and trained to be a wrestler in Stu Hart's Dungeon. He dedicated his win to Calgary. Show walked in and asked Jericho if he saw Orton ran from him. Jericho said he's a giant, so of course Orton ran. Jericho predicted that the night will end great because the fans are going to cheer for him. He said they're gullible and easy to manipulate. He said he was even born in the United States. He said the biggest problem with Canadians is they're not Americans. He said the women of Calgary are ugly. Matthews walked up to Jericho and said the camera is still rollling and he's still on the air. Jericho looked embarrassed. Show just sighed. [c]
-Lawler and Cole announced that next week, Freddie Prinze Jr. will be guest host of Raw. Then they hyped the SummerSlam line-up.
-Cena's ring entrance took place with a mix of cheers and boos. Cena made a big deal of accepting the response by nodding and "being okay with it." Then Jericho came out, also to a mixed reaction based on his comments about ugly Calgary women and the city having nothing going for it. [c]
(7) John Cena defeated Chris Jericho via DQ in 7:00. Lawler again called Canadian fans "bizarro" and then explained the reference to Cole, where everything was backwards for Superman in Bizarro World. For three minutes Jericho was on offense, but Cena came back and got some cheers. Lawler said the crowd was now siding with Cena. Jericho went for a small package in the midst of Cena's "You Can't See Me" bit. Cena came back with an Attitude Adjuster attempt. Jericho escaped and went for the Lionsault. Cena moved, then caught a charging Jericho and set up an Adjustment again, but Jericho escaped and went for a Walls of Jericho. He locked it on mid-ring and Cena made his faces as he crawled to the bottom rope. Cena reversed the hold and applied his STF. Orton charged into the ring and set up a punt kick. The ref called for the bell. Cena popped up. Jericho gave Cena a Code Breaker from behind. Jericho then shoved Orton for intervening in his match. Orton knocked Jericho out of the ring. Big Show entered the ring and gave Orton a chokeslam. (**)
-Sarge stepped out and announced that his last act as guest host would be to book next week's match featuring Orton & Cena vs. Jericho & Show. Cena set up a charging Jericho for an Adjuster, but Orton turned it into an RKO on Jericho first. Cole said the dynamic has changed. Cena and Orton seemed leery of each other as they circled a KO'd Jericho.
THOUGHTS, OBSERVATIONS, NITPICKS
OPENING SEGMENT: The Orton-Cena argument seemed totally manufactured. It's such a stale overplayed feud that there's just no promo I can imagine that won't seem like a retread, but this was especially bad. It was just intense for the sake of intensity with Cena seeming to be mad for no reason... If you tuned in to root for someone, have fun choosing. Jericho's a babyface in Calgary against Cena among many fans, and then they matched Big Show against Orton, two top heels. As the show progressed, they tried to turn Jericho heel and it sorta worked, and they mixed things up further with Jericho going after Orton, and Big Show going after Orton. It wasn't clear at all whether anyone here was likable and worth cheering other than Cena, whom fans either love or hate already...
OTHER THOUGHTS: I'm not sure what Swagger gains from beating Bourne clean without any real backstory to the rivalry or mic work beforehand. It just establishes that Bourne isn't in his league. At least they moved on to get Swagger in an actual feud against MVP. What is with WWE deciding Swagger's lisp is something to be made fun of?... Are the TV writers third graders? It's easily fixed. Just have swagger DENY he has a lisp, and then MVP can call him out for denying he has a lisp when it's obvious. It's a simple fix, that switches from the babyface making kids with lisps feel bad to the babyface calling out the heel for being vain about something that he has no reason to be ashamed of... That was a clever way to get Miz back on Raw (which I suggested/predicted last week should/would happen). It worked as it was, but I'd have liked to have seen them play it out over several weeks or longer with Miz wrestling under a mask and denying it was him.... It was great to finally have a segment on WWE show where a wrestler said something in no way he'd want everyone else to hear, and rather than just pretend the camera was invisible, they acknowledged it and made it believable that the wrestler didn't know he was still being filmed. The Jericho-Show segment late in the show is exactly an example of why there's no need to do the lazy deal where the cameras are just supposed to be invisible because there's a way to accomplish the same thing without the awkward situation where sometimes a wrestler knows he's on camera and other times it's invisible to him... Just an odd show overall. It had the kiddie slapstick PG-rated stuff plus the whole mix-n-match aspect of Orton, Cena, Show, and Jericho wasn't all that satisfying...
John Cena to Randy Orton: "We got a match in two weeks, but right now you're staring at 250 pounds of problem that is ready to rip your body in half."
Big Show: "I breath in someone's direction and I intimidate them."
John Cena: "The reason is your breath smells like Shaquille O'Neal's jockstrap."
Chris Jericho: "Canada, the country that I grew up in. Canada, the country where I trained to be a wrestler in. Canada..."
John Cena: "The country you chose to leave and migrate to the United States."
Jericho in response: "Don't change the subject, Cena, okay?"
Sgt. Slaughter: "You maggots take the United States protection for granted. That's why I've come up with a better idea. I demand each and every one of you to stand up out of those chairs, place your right hand over your hearts, and pay respect to the greatest country in the world."
MVP to Jack Swagger: "The only people who care less about you being an All-American than me are these Canadians in Calgary. They're not booing you because you're an American. They're booing you because you're a self-absorbed, arrogant idiot with a pronounced lisp."
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