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WWE Raw Report
CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 6/25: Ongoing "virtual-time" coverage of live Raw #995 - Cena vs. Jericho, MITB hype

Jun 25, 2012 - 10:04:16 PM
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WWE Raw Supershow Results
June 25, 2012 - Episode #995
Season 20, Episode 26
Live in Ft. Wayne, Ind.
Aired on USA Network
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
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During the USA Network cut-in prior to Raw, WWE announced Big Show vs. Brodus Clay for Raw and stressed John Cena's announcement during the show. USA Network also stressed Chris Jericho's return following suspension.

At the top of the hour, Raw started with Daniel Bryan in a video package. The story shifted to A.J., focusing on her at the center of the WWE Title picture involving Bryan, C.M. Punk, and Kane.

Backstage: A.J. was shown talking to someone (or perhaps no one) off-camera. A.J. said she called them all here to discuss their situation. With Daniel, it's time to drift apart. With Kane, she just wants to get wild, but they know he's not a man, but a monster. A.J. looked down at the ground before shifting to C.M. Punk. She quietly said she likes to think of them as soul mates, but she doesn't think he's thinking what she's thinking. In other words - the camera shifted around to show A.J. talking to none of them - it's best they go their separate ways. The camera showed A.J. talking to the mirror.

Live in the arena, after the standard Raw intro, Cole and Lawler plugged Brodus Clay's return to Raw after being banned to face Big Show tonight and Cena's announcement. Vickie Guerrero's voice then interrupted to bring out Vickie, who noted she's running Raw tonight. She said that considering her track record, she suspects that she will become permanent GM by the time the 1,000th Raw comes around. Vickie said she is excited to deliver a great show tonight, and she is starting with a three-way elimination match to start the show.

Out came Daniel Bryan. Lilian Garcia re-announced the elimination stipulation as the announcers speculated on why A.J. was talking to herself earlier. The crowd was hot with "Yes!" signs everywhere in the crowd as Bryan completed his intro. Kane then came out as the announcers recapped Kane enamored with A.J., costing him several matches recently. Well, except for Bryan vs. Kane on Smackdown when she helped him win. Cult of Personality then played to bring out WWE champion C.M. Punk for this re-match from No Way Out eight days ago.

1 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK vs. DANIEL BRYAN vs. KANE -- non-title three-way elimination match

Bryan went after Kane's left knee, then Punk joined in the attack on the big man. Bryan then tried a quick roll-up on Punk for a two count, drawing a big smile from Bryan. With Kane on the outside, Bryan and Punk exchanged holds in the ring before they cut to a shot of A.J. watching the match on a backstage monitor. Punk then took a page from Super Dragon with a Curb Stomp on Bryan for a two count. Punk then tried to fly through the ropes on Kane, but Kane popped him with a fist. Kane took control of the action leading to break.

[Commercial Break]

[Q2] Back from break, Kane landed body-shots on Punk before stacking up Punk and Bryan in the corner for a big corner splash. They followed with a three-man Tower of Doom spot that turned into Bryan countering the Doomsday Device into a roll-up on Punk for a two count. All three men found themselves on the mat moments later following a double suplex spot. 6:36 into the match, Cole mentioned that ol' WWE Title, saying if Bryan or Kane wins, he could be next in-line for a title shot. Punk then cleared Kane to the floor before launching Bryan over the top rope onto Kane. Punk followed with a suicide dive onto both men ringside.

Back in the ring, Punk tried a top-rope move, but Bryan countered into an arm submission, but Punk countered into a catapult sending Bryan crashing into Kane. Punk then called for the GTS on Bryan, but Kane kicked Punk in the face to break that up. Kane made a cover on Punk, but the champ kicked out. Kane followed with a sidewalk slam on Punk, but another kick-out by the champ. Kane followed with a top-rope clothesline on Punk, then called for a chokeslam, but A.J.'s music played.

A.J., dressed normally, skipped down to ringside, drawing Kane's ire. A.J. skipped right back to the stage area, though, allowing Punk to recover and smash Kane with the GTS. Punk then covered Kane for an elimination at 9:57. Moments later, Bryan smashed Punk in the head with a swift kick. Bryan then covered Punk for the win. Cue up the "Yes!" celebration from Bryan after pinning the champ.

WINNER: Bryan at 10:10. Solid opening match potentially setting up Punk vs. Bryan in a title re-match. (**1/4)

Backstage: Vickie acted content with her booking after watching the opening match. Alberto Del Rio then walked in to try to kiss up to Vickie and get another World Title shot. Dolph Ziggler walked into the shot and said Del Rio needs to get in-line. After things got heated between Dolph and Del Rio, Vickie settled things by booking a #1 contender on a pole match. Whoever wins gets a title shot against Sheamus on Smackdown. Ricardo Rodriguez then walked into the shot with roses inside a vase for Vickie. Dolph intercepted, though, and threw it against the wall. Dolph and Del Rio stormed off, leaving Ricardo to try to make things right with Vickie.

[Commercial Break. Bourne Legacy. Yes. WWE should consider an Evan Bourne return story to coincide with the fourth Bourne movie release this summer.]

Back live, the disco ball was above the ring, which meant time for Brodus Clay. Out came Cameron and Naomi to lead out Big Brodus dancing his way to the ring. Cole explained that now that Laurinaitis has been ousted from power, Vickie has over-turned Laurinaitis's decision to ban Brodus from Raw. So, Brodus is back on Raw to have this match-up against Big Show. After Clay completed his dance trance, Big Show slowly made his way out to the ring to face Brodus, who brings a 24-match TV/PPV winning streak into this match.

[Q3]

2 -- BRODUS CLAY vs. BIG SHOW

The two big men collided mid-ring, then Clay landed some early offense. But, Show went after Clay's injured knee from David Otunga's recent sneak attacks. Show followed up by wrapping Brodus's knee around the ringpost, drawing concern from the dancers ringside. Ref Charles Robinson checked on Clay, who refused to give up. Show then climbed to the second rope and landed a drop to the chest. The crowd booed Show, who encouraged them to bring it louder.

Show slowly went for the KO Punch, but Brodus slipped out and headbutted Show in the gut. Show bounced off the ropes into Clay's arms for a potential bodyslam, but Show's weight was too much and Show fell on top of Clay. Show with the cover for the win, ending Clay's winning streak. Afterward, a content Big Show slowly left the ring as Clay sold pain and frustration. The ringside medic checked on Clay to conclude the segment.

WINNER: Show at 2:33. It will be interesting to see if this leads to Clay off TV to sell the injury or simply coming back stronger next week looking for revenge on Show and Otunga following the loss.

Announcers: Cole and Lawler plugged John Cena's announcement still to come tonight before rolling a video package on Cena's Make-a-Wish work. WWE included news clippings from ESPN, WSJ, and other mainstream outlets covering Cena's 300th wish last week, which came a few hours after TMZ reported that Cena's wife intends to prove Cena cheated on her. They faded to commercial after the video.

[Commercial Break]

Raw #1,000 Flashback: Bob Barker guest-hosting Raw when Barker and Chris Jericho came face-to-face for trash-talking. Barker talked in a sit-down interview about interacting with Jericho as well as Chavo Guerrero. He vowed to give Chavo a re-match on the 2,000th Raw episode.

Announcers: Lawler talked glowingly about Barker, then Cole got serious discussing Brodus Clay's situation. They showed what happened during the commercial when Show KO Punched Clay as Clay was being helped away by referees and medics. Cole wondered aloud who is going to stop Big Show. Cole then shifted things to the Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar situation involving Paul Heyman. After a video replay of Hunter challenging Brock Lesnar to a fight at Summerslam, they showed Paul Heyman turning down the challenge on Lesnar's behalf. The video concluded with a replay of Heyman vowing to own WWE if Hunter hits him, which Hunter did.

Next Week: Brock Lesnar will answer Triple H's Summerslam challenge next week on Raw. No advertising on whether Lesnar will be in the flesh, but the suggestion was he will be part of the show.

[Q4] Backstage: A.J. was shown talking to Kane, who said she makes him feel things he never thought possible. He said it's not a good thing, though. Kane said he's not exactly "boyfriend material," which A.J. said is okay because their relationship is unconventional. Kane said he doesn't do relationships, he's a monster, and his only source of pleasure is eviscerating people. He said he finds her mentally unstable, so it's best for her own good that they just stay away from each other. "Good-bye, A.J.," he said, leaving A.J. confused and saddened. A.J. started to tear up before starting to laugh maniacally.

[Commercial Break]

In-ring: Back live, Jack Swagger was in the ring ready for a match. Cole said Swagger is "floundering" and needs a win tonight. U.S. champ Santino came out to face Swagger in what Cole announced as a U.S. Title defense.

3 -- U.S. champion SANTINO vs. JACK SWAGGER -- U.S. Title match

Cole said Swagger had do something unbecoming for Vickie to receive this U.S. Title shot. Santino went for a quick win early on, but Swagger cut him off and went on a sustained attack. Santino then pulled the Cobra, but Swagger avoided. Santino hit a DDT moments later, then dropped Swagger with the Cobra strike for the pin and the win. Cole said Swagger's poor streak continues.

WINNER: Santino at 2:35 to retain the U.S. Title.

Still to come tonight: Divas Summertime Beach Battle Royal. ... Backstage: John Cena was shown walking down the hallway ahead of his announcement. Cena stopped when he found a box of John Laurinaitis's People Power t-shirts ready to be sent to a donation drop-off. Zack Ryder then entered the shot and they fist-pumped before Cena kept on walking.

[Commercial Break]

Back live two minutes before the top of the hour, WWE paused before playing John Cena's theme music to bring out Cena to a loud reaction. Cena surveyed the crowd on-stage, paused on-stage, and told the home viewers to look around. Cena stormed the ring as Cole reset the show just before the top of the hour.

[Q5 -- second hour] Cena waited out crowd applause before noting his tweet earlier today. He said WWE has been turned upside down the past month. Cena then sucked in a lot of air to give a long Star Wars-themed recap of what's happened with Laurinaitis, Big Show, Vince McMahon, Brodus Clay, Zack Ryder, and himself over the past month. Cena cracked himself up recapping the end of Laurinaitis's empire when McMahon fired him at No Way Out.

Suddenly, the lights went down before Cena could give a historical announcement matching the historical end of Laurinaitis's reign. Chris Jericho's music played and out came Jericho on-stage looking five years older facially. Jericho was sporting a black jacket, t-shirt, skinny blue jeans, and black boots. Cole framed Jericho's return as him being away touring (rather than suspended for 30 days). No light-up jacket or wild entrance for Jericho, then Cole recapped footage of Fozzy's European Tour and upcoming U.S. tour this summer. Back live, Jericho was in the ring eying Cena with a measured look.

In the ring, Jericho asked Cena what in the world he's talking about. Instead of wasting time, go ahead and make the announcement, shut up, and get out of the ring. Cena calmed down the boos before announcing that Jericho is back. He said he may have gotten a little carried away because a lot of things have happened since Jericho left. Cena said he's concerned about Big Show in the MITB ladder match, so in order to stop Show, he's entering himself in the MITB ladder match for the first time. Cena and Jericho then debated Cena using the word "fudging," with Cena noting it's a PG show. Jericho asked if he's nine-years-old. Cena claimed most of their viewers are around that age. Well, that's pretty way off since the average demographic is late-30s.

Jericho shot back at Cena that he invented the MITB ladder match and called Cena so smug for trying to crack jokes and laughing all the time. Jericho said the MITB match isn't a joke. He told Cena if he wants to have fun, hit up a bouncy house or do another Star Wars promo. Jericho told Cena to get serious about the MITB ladder match because he owns the match. He told Cena it's a career-ender, so instead of worrying about Big Show, Cena needs to be worried about stopping him. Jericho said as of right now, he's entering himself in the MITB ladder match as well.

Suddenly, Vickie Guerrero interrupted on-stage. Vickie said in three weeks, the MITB PPV will take place. Vickie paused to create some boos, appearing to lose her place. She continued that there will be two MITB ladder matches - one for the WWE Title contract and one for the World Title contract. Jericho tried to interrupt, but Vickie cut him off, then Jericho shot back wondering if she's going to suspend him. Vickie said she spoke to the Board of Directors about who will be in the WWE Title MITB ladder match and she said it will only be former WWE champions - Kane, Big Show, Jericho, and Cena. Cena said that's a great idea, so Vickie should keep it going by only listening to the Board and not making any decisions of her own.

Vickie ignored Cena's jab and said she is GM for the night, so she can make the main event. Vickie said it's been nearly two years - then said it's first-time-ever - Jericho vs. Cena tonight. Vickie left the stage before Jericho slipped out of the ring, still selling annoyance with Cena.

Backstage: WWE showed the 1,000 Raw logo to indicate a former Raw main-eventer is on the show tonight. The announcers recapped Vader on Raw two weeks ago and Mick Foley and Roddy Piper on Raw last week leading to break.

[Commercial Break]

[Q6] Back live, Lilian Garcia tried to announce this week's former Raw main-eventer on the show, but Heath Slater's music interrupted to bring out Slater singing his own praises. After a replay of Slater taking a gold frame to the head last week, Slater cut a promo that he is one of the top Superstars on Raw and he rules the world. Sid? Slater repeated that he rules the world. Suddenly, Sid's scary music played to bring out Sid, who Cole called scary like A.J. Cole said he hasn't been on Raw in 15 years. Sid, look aged facially, was dressed in blue jeans with black kneepads and his signature vest.

4 -- PSYCHO SID vs. HEATH SLATER

Sid called for cheers before the bell sounded, then began to dismantle Slater. Slater tried to make a comeback going after Sid's left knee before landing elbows to the back of the head. Slater tried to build momentum coming off the ropes, but Sid clotheslined him to the mat. Sid landed a big leg drop, then called for the powerbomb. He delivered it center-ring, then bent down to put a hand on Slater's chest for the win. Post-match, Sid crawled toward the ringside camera as Lawler noted he's "a little older," but still psycho.

WINNER: Sid at 1:30. Not as much of a nostalgic reaction for Vader, as a good portion of the Cena Era audience didn't know who he is.

Still to come: Divas Battle Royal. Plus, Cena vs. Jericho.

[Commercial Break]

Announcers: Cole and Lawler plugged the July 23 Raw when WWE recognizes 1,000 episodes. Lawler announced the Raw #1,000 Celebrity Ambassador news item, but did not mention Charlie Sheen by name.

In-ring: Lilian Garcia announced the #1 contender contract pole match to determine who faces Sheamus for the World Title on Friday's Smackdown. A very sad Ricardo Rodriguez then took center-stage to introduce Alberto Del Rio. Dolph Ziggler came out next by himself to face Del Rio with the title contract hanging on a pole above a corner turnbuckle. Lawler said he thinks the only reason why Ziggler is in this match is because Vickie is GM.

[Q7]

5 -- ALBERTO DEL RIO vs. DOLPH ZIGGLER -- #1 contender match -- contract on a pole

Ziggler quickly tried to climb the pole to retrieve the contract, but Del Rio cut him off. Del Rio then decked Ziggler and slowly made his way toward the contract, but Ziggler pulled him down. The crowd was quiet with no rooting interest, then the vocal males picked up a light "Let's Go Ziggler" chant. Ziggler tried the Zig-Zag, but Del Rio blocked. They took the battle toward the pole as Lawler noted he likes this match watching them beat each other up. Ziggler hopped on Del Rio's shoulders trying to climb toward the contract, but Del Rio blocked, then sort of hit a fallaway slam that seemed to affect both men. They reset with another corner battle, then the contract fell to the mat.

The two men mad-scrambled toward the contract with a fumble situation ensuing. Neither man controlled the contract for a full second, then they knocked each other down. Ricardo tried to grab the contract, but Ziggler kicked it to the outside. Del Rio and Ziggler locked eyes for a moment, then tried to scramble to the outside, but pulled each other away from ringside. This continued on before the two men spilled to the opposite side of the floor.

Suddenly, Sheamus's music played to bring out Sheamus telling the "ladies" they don't need to keep fighting. Sheamus said he just spoke to Vickie, who told him that it will be a triple threat match for the World Title. But, before they get their hopes up, this match won't be about showing off or destiny, but about him kicking both their arses this Friday night. Sheamus's music played to apparently this. Lawler wondered why Sheamus is happy about this, and Cole said it's because he likes to fight.

WINNER: Nothing at 5:40 when the segment ended. What a trainwreck disaster from the booking department. But, beyond the actual match, good synergy promoting a World Title match four days later on Smackdown.

A.J. Poll Result: Cole and Lawler revealed the results of who A.J. should be with - 51 percent for Punk, 27 percent for Kane, 8 percent for Bryan, and 14 percent for all three. WWE then replayed the start of Raw when A.J. cost Kane the triple threat match before Bryan won. Cole then made an official announcement of Punk vs. Bryan for the WWE Title at MITB.

Backstage: Punk was on the phone, then A.J. covered his eyes and asked to guess who it is. Punk said King Kong Bundy. A.J., dressed in a bath robe, ignored the comment, then said she's dedicating her Divas battle royal victory to him. Punk said after that, they need to have a serious conversation. A.J. said she's not against taking things to the next level - frustrating Punk - but said she has to win the battle royal first. A.J. skipped away, leaving Punk flustered with her not getting the point.

[Commercial Break]

Raw Flashback: September 1999 for Mick Foley's "This Is Your Life" tribute for The Rock.

[Q8]

6 -- DIVAS SUMMERTIME BATTLE ROYAL

Back live, 11 Divas were assembled in the ring before "Kris Jenner" Vickie Guerrero interrupted and inserted herself into the match. The other Divas then ganged up on her to begin the battle royal. Where's Gail Kim to skip out early? After Divas started clearing out, it came down to Vickie and A.J., who avoided elimination, then eliminated Vickie. A.J. did Bryan's "Yes!" celebration to continue her mind games story.

WINNER: A.J. at 2:10.

Up next: Cena vs. Jericho main event. ... Smackdown plug: WWE is bringing back the Great American Bash theme for the live Smackdown next Tuesday, July 3 to celebrate Fourth of July.

[Commercial Break. And, Katy Perry's Pepsi commercial has unofficially broken Domino's record for most commercial airings in one WWE episode.]

Announcers: Back live, Cole plugged Sheamus vs. Del Rio vs. Ziggler for the World Title on Friday's Smackdown episode.

In-ring: The lights went out to signal Chris Jericho's return to wrestling action. Jericho was sporting the light-up jacket this time. Jericho sauntered to the ring acting above the whole thing, prompting to Lawler to say he thinks his future is as bright as the jacket. Cole recapped Jericho's entry in the Raw MITB ladder match and said Jericho invented the MITB concept. After a pause, Cena's music played to bring out Cena for the main event.

7 -- JOHN CENA vs. CHRIS JERICHO

As Cena and Jericho felt each other out, the announcers recapped Cena's accomplishments during his 10-year run in WWE and Jericho's career highlights. Jericho slapped Cena, who retaliated with a punch that sent Jericho to the outside to stall for time. They cut to break one minute into the main event.

[Commercial Break. Katy Perry has topped her own unofficial record.]

Back from break, Jericho was in control of the action with a side headlock mid-ring. Cena powered to his feet as Cole recapped the news on tonight's show. Cena broke free of the headlock, but Jericho dropkicked him to maintain control. The announcers recapped Cena and Jericho in the Raw MITB ladder match before Lawler claimed every MITB winner has gone on to become WWE champ. Cole corrected him that the person who has cashed in MITB has become champ every time. Cole also noted Cena wants to get back in the WWE Title picture after not being champ for a year.

[Q9 -- over-run] At the top of the hour, Jericho kicked Cena to the mat to maintain control. Cole reset the show, focusing on A.J. wreaking havoc on the show, Big Show on a rampage again, and the four participants in the Raw MITB ladder match. Cena then made his comeback with a shoulder tackle, then sit-out slam to set up the Five Knuckle Shuffle, which Jericho blocked with a Walls of Jericho tease. Cena then teased the AA, but Jericho slipped out. Cena came back with the finish to the Shuffle.

Suddenly, Big Show's music played to bring out a distraction for Cena. Cole reminded viewers that Show claimed to be moving on from Cena. Back in the ring, Jericho trapped Cena in the Walls of Jericho center-ring. Show then slipped into the ring and dropped a leg across Cena to cause a DQ. Jericho sold frustration losing the match, but Show asked him if he wants some of this. After the brief Jeri-Show reunion, Jericho backed down, then gave Show the ring to have at it.

WINNER: Cena via DQ at 8:18. Not much given away with most of the match occurring during the commercial.

Post-match: Show grappled Cena and super-chokeslammed him center-ring. Cena flopped over onto his stomach to sell the effects as Show stared into the crowd. Show followed with a modified Camel Clutch - the Colossal Clutch, as described by Cole. Cena's face turned purple as he sold the effects. Lawler called for someone to do something about Show, but decided no one can stop Show. Show released the hold as Raw went off the air four minutes past the top of the hour.

FINAL THOUGHTS: This felt like a reset show, but not quite with WWE continuing the A.J. story and the World Title players remaining the same. But, no John Laurinaitis on Raw and Chris Jericho returning made it feel like a reset show, especially with the news items coming out of Raw.

***

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We welcome your 0-10 score and comments on this show for a "Raw Reax" feature in the Torch Feedback section of PWTorch.com. To contribute your thoughts on Raw, email to pwtorch@gmail.com using our Feedback form
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