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WWE Raw Report
CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 8/13: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of live Raw - Brock-Hunter contract signing turns physical, Punk-Cena, final Summerslam hype

Aug 13, 2012 - 10:02:26 PM
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WWE Raw Supershow Results
August 13, 2012 - Episode #1,002
Live in Dallas, Texas
Aired on USA Network
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
Staff12CaldwellJames_120_71.jpg


This week's three-hour WWE Raw started with the new Raw intro video followed by full pyro inside the American Airlines Center to kick off the show. Michael Cole said they are six nights away from Summerslam before introducing Jerry Lawler on commentary.

In the ring, Justin Roberts announced the opening contest, which brought out WWE champion C.M. Punk to a loud reaction to face Big Show. Cole said it's a huge way to start Raw with Punk in action six days before defending the WWE Title against Show and John Cena at Summerslam. Punk hit the ring as the announcers brought up Punk's desire to be the center of attention in the spotlight. Big Show came out next and marched to the ring while glaring at ringside fans. Before the match started, WWE replayed the end of last week's Raw when Show was the last man standing after KO'ing Punk and Cena.

1 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK vs. BIG SHOW -- non-title match

Lawler quickly employed WWE Reverse Psychology by saying things aren't looking good for Punk's title reign on Sunday, saying all good things come to an end. Big Show dominated early on as Lawler noted Show is in a grumpy mood after returning from Smackdown's overseas tour. Show continued the assault before Punk teased a comeback with kicks and strikes. Punk couldn't get Show off his feet, though. Suddenly, Show came out of the corner with a big spear that took both men off their feet.

Suddenly, Daniel Bryan's music played to bring out Bryan shouting, "No!" on his way down the entrance ramp. The crowd went wild with "Yes!" chants, irritating Bryan, who walked up to the announcers and demanded to be in the WWE Title match at Summerslam. Bryan's music stopped as Show dropped Punk with a sidewalk slam back in the ring for a nearfall. Ringside, Bryan continued to demand a title shot as the crowd focused on Bryan. Bryan then entered the ring and attacked Punk, causing the match to be thrown out via DQ.

WINNER: Punk via DQ at 6:00. Very slow match with them obviously holding back ahead of the tag match made for later tonight.

Post-match: Bryan slapped on the No! Lock on Punk as Show watched. Show then dropped an elbow to Punk's back, which broke up Bryan's hold. Suddenly, John Cena stormed the ring and cleared Show over the top rope with a big clothesline. Bryan tried to get at Cena, but Cena dumped him over the top rope. Cena fired up the crowd as Punk knelt behind him in anger with his spotlight stolen again. Cena then slowly backed away as Punk yelled at him.

Suddenly, A.J.'s music played to bring out A.J., who surveyed the carnage ringside while skipping into the ring. In the ring, A.J. noted Bryan is still dealing with his anger management issues, so he's going to make it up to everyone tonight by teaming with Big Show against the team of Punk and...Punk told A.J. not to say it...John Cena. Punk, peeved, tried to ignore this proclamation before engaging in a conversation with Cena.

Tonight: Triple H and Brock Lesnar face-to-face tonight for a contract signing. Cole said they will be in the same ring at the same time tonight.

[Commercial Break...] [...Q2]

Backstage: JTG was talking to Kaitlyn. JTG took Zack Ryder's bit complaining about not being able to get on a three-hour Raw. A.J. then stepped into the shot and asked JTG if he's saying she's not doing a good job. A.J. said if JTG wants to compete so badly, then get to the ring because she will find him an opponent right now. Good friends A.J. and Kaitlyn were left alone to discuss things. A.J. asked Kaitlyn if she thinks she's unstable. Kaitlyn said she can thing of many words to describe A.J. and "unstable" isn't one of them. Kaitlyn walked off and A.J. cocked her head from side to side contemplating what Kaitlyn meant by that.

Announcers: Cole and Lawler talked on-camera about tonight's tag main event set up in the opening segment before JTG's music played. Cole brought up JTG's "controversial remarks" on Twitter last week, which is WWE trying to own the real story of JTG complaining about undercard wrestlers's WrestleMania pay. After a pause, Ryback's music played, drawing a gasp from JTG. Lawler said JTG is going to get his mouth shut. Ryback, now with animal noises added to his theme music, marched to the ring and surveyed the crowd before turning his attention to JTG.

2 -- RYBACK vs. JTG

Ryback dominated early on before JTG tried to stall to avoid Ryback. A light "Goldberg" chant picked up for a few moments before Ryback ran over JTG and suplexed him. It sounded like Lawler's mic was turned on to the live audience momentarily before Ryback led the crowd in a "Feed Me More" chant, which lead to a giant clothesline on JTG. Ryback even did Goldberg's "Finish him" proclamation before lifting up JTG for his backpack slam. Cole said he can't wait for JTG to tweet about this.

WINNER: Ryback at 1:54. Classic WWE punishing those who speak out, complete with the commentators produced to mock JTG.

Announcers: Cole and Lawler said Roddy Piper is here tonight. So, the RawActive poll tonight is who should be the guest on Piper's Pit tonight - Chris Jericho, The Miz, or Dolph Ziggler.

[Commercial Break]

Announcers: U.S. champion Santino vs. Antonio Cesaro for the U.S. Title is the pre-Summerslam YouTube match.

Backstage: Roddy Piper was shown talking to no one in particular. He said no one knows who his guest is going to be. The camera then pulled back to show Piper talking to a distracted Shawn Michaels. Piper said he would be intimidated, too, if he had to fight Brock Lesnar. Michaels said he's not fighting Lesnar, then had to take a phone call. Michaels told "Mr. Big Wig" he needs to be here tonight. He said he doesn't even know why he's in this situation because it's his fight. Michaels, frustrated, hung up. Apparently Triple H was late for the show.

In-ring: Back in the arena, Heath Slater was in the ring. Slater said tonight is the night everything changes for him. R-Truth's music suddenly interrupted to bring out Truth to face Slater. Cole noted Kofi Kingston is not here tonight after not making it back from the international tour. Cole also announced WWE tag champs Kofi & Truth vs. Prime Time Players at Summerslam.

[Q3]

3 -- WWE tag champion R-TRUTH vs. HEATH SLATER

Back and forth action before Truth finished off Slater with Little Jimmy. Afterward, Truth pretended to celebrate with his invisible Little Jimmy. Prime Time Players's music then played to bring out the PTPers sans a fired A.W., who was not mentioned by the announcers. PTPers took advantage of Kofi Kingston not being here tonight to deliver a two-on-one beating to Truth. Titus O'Neil and Darren Young posed in the ring as the announcers suggested the Tag Titles are in jeopardy on Sunday.

WINNER: Truth at 1:30.

[Commercial Break]

Announcers: Back live, Lawler said R-Truth was helped to the back after the beating from PTP'ers in the previous segment. Cole then talked about the Olympics and rolled a video from Mark Henry interacting with U.S. athletes in London. In one of his touts, Henry gave a shout-out to the Texas Longhorns, specifically Marquise Goodwin. Back on-camera, Lawler congratulated all of the athletes from around the world who competed. Cole thanked NBC and its networks for their coverage. They switched gears to plugging D.J. Pauly D as Social Media Ambassador for Raw, which drew boos from the live crowd. Cole then read a few tweets from Pauly D. Next, Cole discussed the World Title situation on Smackdown with Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio supposed to happen at Summerslam.

Video replay: Last Friday's Smackdown when Del Rio was supposed to face Sheamus for the World Title before Del Rio got the match cancelled via "police attack" on Sheamus. This led to Smackdown GM Booker T cancelling Sheamus vs. Del Rio at Summerslam after Smackdown went off the air.

Earlier Today: Del Rio responded via Tout. He claimed to have a contract for the World Title match and said he will have a conversation with Booker T this Friday on Smackdown. Cole then read a Tout plug asking the audience to respond to Booker trying to cancel the title match at Summerslam.

[Q4] In-ring: Back in the arena after a long break in the action, Sin Cara's music played to bring out Cara for a singles match on the other side of the break.

[Commercial Break]

Back from break, Tensai was introduced as Sin Cara's opponent. Coming back from break, WWE replayed Cara beating Cody Rhodes on Friday's Smackdown after Rhodes became too obsessed with Cara's mask.

4 -- SIN CARA vs. TENSAI (w/Sakamoto)

Tensai quickly went for a powerbomb, but Cara flipped over Tensai and landed kicks. Tensai, who looks odd in the mood lighting, ran over Cara before trying a corner splash, but Cara moved. Cara then nicked Tensai with a senton before sending Tensai flying into Sakamoto on the ring apron. Cara followed with a swinging DDT out of the corner for a pin on Tensai.

Post-match: Tensai took out his anger on Sakamoto with a post-match attack.

WINNER: Cara at 1:05. Bad match-up. The action was overly-choreographed with Tensai having to stand there with his head to the side waiting for Cara to perform moves and this was unrealistic for a big man vs. high-flyer match. No one is going to believe Cara beating Tensai in one minute just based on the size difference.

Backstage: Shawn Michaels talked to a stagehand about looking for someone. Michaels then kept walking down the hallway.

Up Next: Roddy Piper hosts Piper's Pit with Jericho, Miz, or Ziggler depending on the fan vote.

[Commercial Break]

Smackdown Video: A generic ad plugged whether Sheamus will strike back against Del Rio before their match at Summerslam, which goes against the current storyline of Booker cancelling the title match.

Piper's Pit Segment

Back live in the ring, Jerry Lawler introduced Roddy Piper in the Piper's Pit segment. Piper got himself up to speed about Ziggler having the MITB briefcase, Ziggler claiming Jericho can't win the big one, and Miz doing movies. Piper acted tripped up on the RawActive polling, then Lawler righted the ship by revealing the poll result of 55 percent for Jericho, 21 percent for Miz, and 24 percent for Ziggler. Out came Chris Jericho dressed to wrestle just before the top of the hour as Cole plugged Jericho vs. Ziggler at Summerslam on Sunday.

[Q5 -- second hour] Once in the ring, Jericho acted like a kid in the candy store being on Piper's Pit. Piper tried to figure out why the crowd is cheering for him. He said the last time he saw him, Mickey Rourke punched his lights out. Jericho noted the last time he saw Piper, he punched out Piper and beat him and two other Legends at WrestleMania 25. Piper then went back to his career when the crowd just started cheering him against Mr. T and the same has happened to Jericho. Piper brought up Ziggler's claim that Jericho has lost his step, then entered promo mode. Suddenly, Cole interjected a line about this Piper Pit stinking.

Suddenly, Vickie Guerrero interrupted and tried to excuse herself over Piper, who ignored her and kept talking. Vickie then introduced Dolph Ziggler as Vickie noted Ziggler isn't even supposed to be out here. On the way to the ring, Ziggler said he can't believe this. He asked Piper how long he's been doing the same tired routine for years and years. Ziggler called it sad. Piper, Jericho, and Ziggler kind of talked over each other. Ziggler then told Jericho to pay attention to this guy - Piper - and see what failed comeback after failed comeback looks like. Ziggler told Jericho that after he beats him at Summerslam, he can take his light-up jacket and stick it next to Piper's kilt. Jericho told Ziggler he wasn't paying attention because he was distracted by the bowl of spaghetti on his head. Vickie interrupted and Jericho told her to shut the hell up. Jericho told Vickie he hasn't forgotten Vickie slapping him on Smackdown last Friday. Jericho then told all of them and all of the Jericholics that he's going to prove everyone wrong when he beats Ziggler at Summerslam. "That is a guarantee that he will never, eeeeeeeeeever go back on."

Suddenly, The Miz's music interrupted. IC champ The Miz strutted out on-stage smelling the air and waving his mic as Piper muttered, "Oh, the movie star." Miz ignored Piper as he walked to the ring asking, "Really?" Miz said he and Ziggler are the best of friends, but they can actually win the big ones. Miz said Ziggler won MITB and he won in the main event of WrestleMania 27 and three weeks ago, he won the IC Title. Miz then said he doesn't care about a fan vote because he's taking over this show. Piper shook his head no, then shouted, "No!" before Jericho popped Miz in the face with a right hand. Jericho cleared Miz, then clotheslined Ziggler over the top rope to the floor. Jericho's music played and he stood tall in the ring with Piper. Cole offered another dig at Piper before posing the question of whether Jericho can win at Summerslam.

[Commercial Break]

5 -- CHRIS JERICHO vs. IC champion THE MIZ vs. DOLPH ZIGGLER (w/Vickie Guerrero) -- three-way non-title match

Back from break, the announcers noted A.J. Lee booked a three-way match during the commercial. Cole also told viewers about A.J.'s announcement before Raw of Miz vs. Rey Mysterio for the IC Title at Summerslam. Once the bell sounded, Dolph and Miz tried to double-team Jericho, but Jericho sent Ziggler to the outside and scored with offense on Miz. Jericho took too long to follow up, though, allowing Ziggler to pull him down from the outside. The heels then isolated Jericho.

[Q6] Ziggler landed consecutive elbow drops, then tried a pin, but Miz yanked him off Jericho. Miz and Ziggler then engaged in a non-violent conversation, which allowed Jericho to recover and knock both heels to the outside. Jericho followed with a big splash to the outside before posing on the announce table. Jericho wasn't done with the table, as he threw the table lid on top of the heels. Jericho got caught in the numbers game, though, as Ziggler kicked him off the apron as he tried to get back into the ring while Miz held his foot. They cut to break with Jericho in trouble on the outside.

[Commercial Break]

Back from break, Miz was working on Jericho in the ring while Ziggler was recovering on the floor. Miz then snapped Jericho face-first across the bottom rope before cutting off Ziggler from trying to re-enter the ring. Miz taunted Jericho to get up, then sat down on his back with a modified Camel Clutch. Jericho came back with a chop to the chest before Miz ate the corner turnbuckle. Jericho made a comeback with shoulder blocks before dropkicking a returning Ziggler off the ring apron. Jericho bulldogged Miz, then connected with a Lionsault. Jericho made a cover, but Ziggler hit the ring to break up the pin.

At 11:00, Jericho cleared Ziggler, then crotched Miz on the top rope. Jericho teased a superplex on Miz, but Ziggler re-entered the ring for a three-way Tower of Doom spot that popped the crowd. Miz rolled out of the ring as Jericho and Ziggler recovered in the ring. The two men traded close nearfalls before Ziggler nailed the Fameasser, but Jericho kicked out of a pin. Suddenly, Miz re-entered the ring and dropped Ziggler with the Skullcrushing Finale, but Jericho broke up a pin.

Bodies started flying in and out of the ring before Jericho dropped Ziggler with the Codebreaker. Jericho couldn't capitalize, though, and was slow to make a cover. In the process, Vickie placed Dolph's foot on the bottom rope to stop the ref's count. Suddenly, Miz rolled up Jericho from behind, but Jericho kicked out. Jericho then teased the Walls of Jericho before applying center-ring. Vickie hopped up on the ring apron to distract the ref as Miz tapped out. Ziggler then snuck in the back door with a Zig-Zag to Jericho for the pin and the win.

WINNER: Ziggler at 14:17. This turned into a heck of a match with great action from all three men. Ziggler winning here seems to indicate Jericho wins on Sunday, but you would think Jericho loses to Ziggler on the way out of town for his next WWE vacation. Jericho does have a TV date remaining after Summerslam, though, so Jericho could win at Summerslam, then Ziggler could "write off Jericho" with a beat down/high-stakes return match on TV after Summerslam. (***)

Backstage: C.M. Punk was shown stretching. Eve Torres then walked up to Punk to congratulate him on the new C.M. Punk. Punk said he's not wearing a black hat or twirling his moustache; just the same guy fighting for himself. Eve smirked and said she's not buying it, nor is Cena. Punk said he'll go tell Cena himself right now. Punk walked off as Eve smiled at her latest work putting a bug in Punk's ear.

Still to come tonight: Brock Lesnar and Triple H contract signing.

[Commercial Break] [Q7]

Announcers: Cole and Lawler talked on-camera about Pauly D tweeting during Raw. Cole plugged Pauly D at Summerslam d.j.'ing a pre-PPV event. Cole then went back to the top of the show when C.M. Punk and Big Show wrestled before Daniel Bryan interrupted, then John Cena entered the picture to set up the main event tag match tonight. WWE basically replayed the entire final four minutes of the opening segment. After the replay, a graphic reinforced the tag main event still to come.

Backstage: Shawn Michaels was shown wandering down the hallway looking for someone. Michaels grabbed a water at catering, then John Cena excitedly approached him, freaking out Michaels. Michaels calmed down, then told Cena he's just distracted. Exit Michaels. C.M. Punk then entered the camera shot and Cena asked Punk how he's going to handle their tag match tonight. Punk said he's not That Guy that Cena mentioned last week. Punk said he doesn't like the triple threat match on Sunday, but he's not going to be That Guy making a big stink about it. Punk said he's going to do whatever it takes to make sure he's still Champ and it's still all about him. Punk walked off and Cena stared after him with his movie scene look.

[Commercial Break]

Vignette: Wade Barrett. Barrett said life used to be very simple for him: fight or die. Barrett said he was lured away into a world of lies and illusions - civilization. Barrett said he couldn't live the lie anymore. He said life is pain. Barrett said his barrage has just begun.

[Q8]

6 -- Divas champion LAYLA & KAITLYN vs. EVE & BETH PHOENIX

Layla and Kaitlyn came out first for the tag match, then Eve and a returning Beth Phoenix were out next. Before the bell sounded, WWE plugged Eve vs. Kaitlyn this Friday on Smackdown to determine Booker T's assistant. Layla took control of the tag action early on before the heels isolated Kaitlyn. A "We Want Ryder" chant picked up in the arena. Layla then tagged in and scored another surprise win over Phoenix, who acted shocked as the faces celebrated.

WINNERS: Layla & Kaitlyn at 4:25.

Video package: Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar feud going back to Lesnar's demands from WWE, then Brock "snapping Hunter's arm," then Hunter proposing the Summerslam match, then Paul Heyman refusing the challenge, then Stephanie getting Heyman to accept the match on Lesnar's behalf, then Shawn Michaels and Lesnar exchanging words last week on Raw to set up tonight. The video included clips of Lesnar destroying John Cena during their Extreme Rules match in April. The video ended with Lesnar threatening to see Michaels before Summerslam.

Garage: WWE went to a shot of the space where Triple H's vehicle will arrive tonight. Lawler said Hunter is on the way to the arena.

Up next: Punk & Cena vs. Show & Daniel Bryan in the top-of-the-third-hour main event. It appears the Lesnar-Hunter contract signing with close the show.

[Commercial Break]

In-ring: Back live, Big Show's music played for the featured tag match tonight. Show was not in a good mood having to wrestle again tonight. Show bounced the ropes, then Daniel Bryan's music played to bring out Bryan to another round of infuriating "Yes!" chants. During the pause before Punk's music played, Bryan flipped out audible "Yes!" chants. As Punk came out, Cole plugged WWE's Top 10 Fantasy Matches That Never Happened article, referencing the selection of Punk vs. the late Randy Savage.

[Q9 -- third hour] At the top of the third hour, John Cena's music played to a big reaction to bring out Cena as the fourth man in the match. Cena posed on-stage and played to the crowd while Punk sold annoyance in the ring. Cena then stormed the ring and surveyed the crowd before looking at Punk, who stood in the corner mocking Cena's standard ring intro. After Cena finished, Punk just slipped to the ring apron, giving Cena the opening to start the match.

7 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK & JOHN CENA vs. BIG SHOW & DANIEL BRYAN

Cena landed a shoulder tackle on Bryan, then Punk slap-tagged himself into the match. Cena, smiling, slipped to the outside as Punk and Bryan went at it. After Punk executed some offense, Cena playfully slapped himself into the match. Punk smirked, Cena smirked, and Cena re-entered. Show then asked for a tag and Bryan shouted, "No!" over and over. The crowd chanted, "Yes!" in response. Bryan, agitated, locked up with Cena, who arm-dragged Bryan before dropkicking him. Bryan then scampered over to his corner to tag in Show, who teed off on Cena as Punk smirked from the ring apron. They cut to break with Show dominating Cena.

[Commercial Break]

Back from break, Cena was struggling for breath as Show remained in control. Show then corner-splashed Cena before taunting his partner, Daniel Bryan. Cena tried to muster a comeback, but Show grabbed Cena in mid-air for a bearhug. Bryan proceeded to tag himself into the match and demanded Show get out of his ring. Bryan then almost-comically airballed a corner attack on Cena and Cena rolled over to his corner. Punk leaned down and tagged himself into the match before delivering offense to Bryan. Show proceeded to splash Punk across the back from behind, then Punk tried to crawl over to his corner to tag in Cena, but Cena had disappeared after the attack from Show. Show then tagged back into the match and began working on Punk.

Show delivered a big chop to Punk's chest as Cena was shown recovering to a standing position on the ring apron. Show then slapped on a bearhug as Cena tried to encourage the crowd to rally behind Punk. Punk broke free, but ran into a back body drop from Show. Punk tried to fight back, but Show bodyslammed him center-ring. Show then called for the Chokeslam, but Bryan slap-tagged himself back into the match, prompting the crowd to scream "Yes!" and "No!" again. Show had enough of this and slowly left the ring to sit down at the timekeeper's table.

Back in the ring, Bryan then blasted Punk with kick strikes before Punk ducked and roundhouse-kicked Bryan in the face. Punk recovered and looked toward Cena, who wanted a tag, but Punk ignored him. Punk then built a head of steam and cleaned house on Bryan before doing a sit-out slam a la Cena. Punk proceeded to do Cena's hand motion, Five Knuckle Shuffle set-up, and Cena tagged himself into the match. Cena proceeded to deliver a high knee into a bulldog before pointing to his wrist that it's time. Punk, unhappy, left the ring with his title belt and told Cena to go on ahead. Suddenly, Bryan rolled up Cena from behind, but Cena kicked out. Cena then scooped up Bryan and delivered an AA for the pin and the win.

[Q10] Post-match: Cena posed in the ring while Punk and Show stood off on opposite ringside areas. Show then slowly entered the ring as Cena celebrated and Punk entered the ring to blast Show with the title belt. Cena turned around to examine the confusion, then Punk and Cena squared off in the ring. Punk made the first move with a handshake offer, which Cena wasn't willing to accept. Punk, annoyed, removed the offer before angrily walking out of the ring. Cena remained in the ring selling that he was trying to figure out Punk, who disappeared to the back. Cena's music played and Cena just shook his head.

WINNERS: Cena & Punk at 13:25. Poor Bryan was the butt of the joke in this match, but the crowd remained hot for his act. Overall, good use the Strange Bedfellows tag match formula to put the focus mainly on Cena and Punk - which is the money feud for Summerslam - rather than going too heavy on Show's role in their feud. (**)

After a replay of the tag match ending, Punk was shown walking backstage. Josh Mathews then asked Punk to explain things tonight. Punk said he thinks Cena went into business for himself, but at least Cena learned a new move tonight. Punk said he extended his hand to Cena, but Cena disrespected him. Punk vowed to teach Punk about respect tonight. A wrestler appearing to be Cena was walking in the far background as Mathews signed off.

[Commercial Break]

Announcers: Cole and Lawler discussed Smackdown's Asia tour completed over the weekend.

Backstage: Paul Heyman was shown talking to Brock Lesnar, who appeared to be demonstrating MMA holds to Heyman.

In-ring: Damien Sandow was introduced for the next match on the show. Sandow was impressed by a replay of his work last week taking out Brodus Clay. Christian then came out to face Sandow as the announcers re-plugged Santino vs. Cesaro for the U.S. Title on the Summerslam PPV pre-show.

8 -- DAMIEN SANDOW vs. CHRISTIAN

This was positioned as the "come-down match" following the "main event" tag match and the crowd reacted accordingly early on. Sandow took Christian to the outside and rammed his head repeatedly in the ring steps, then Brodus Clay's music suddenly played to an instant pop. Clay hobbled out on-stage sporting a taped knee. Sandow, distracted, was nearly rolled up from behind by Christian, but Sandow kicked out just in time. Sandow immediately followed up with a neckbreaker for the pin and the win. Clay frowned, then Sandow did a cartwheel to impress Clay.

WINNER: Sandow at 2:11. Sure, WWE is high on Sandow right now, but, man, Christian can't even win with help from a distraction. At least he picked up a victory over Cesaro on Smackdown, but he hasn't been positioned well on Raw as of late.

Backstage: Shawn Michaels was still looking for someone. Michaels looked around a corner, but no sign of the individual. Michaels then spun around to find Brock Lesnar staring at him. Michaels pensively backed away, then Lesnar smiled as Michaels walked off.

Up next: Hunter-Lesnar contract signing. Cole said Hunter has not arrived at the building, though.

[Commercial Break...] [...Q11]

Lesnar-Hunter Contract Signing

With half-an-hour-plus remaining in the show, Raw returned from break with a wide shot of the arena as Brock Lesnar's music played. After a pause, Lesnar sauntered out on-stage flanked by Paul Heyman. Lesnar bounced up and down on stage before marching to the ring sneering at the ringside fans. Lesnar entered the ring, which had a contract table and fancy office chairs set up. As Lesnar paced around in the ring, Cole referenced Lesnar winning his first WWE Title ten years ago at Summerslam.

As Lesnar continued to walk around the contract table, Heyman introduced himself and said he stands before the audience with great humility as the advocate for Brrrrrock Lesssssnar. Heyman told the audience that Hunter has been experiencing flight delays, then entered a monologue about Hunter wanting this match with Brock more than anyone else. He said Hunter needs this match because it's the most personal fight of Hunter's career and life. Heyman said the honor of WWE and his own family is in Hunter's hands at Summerslam. Heyman channeled Damien Sandow thanking the crowd for their irrelevant opinion.

Heyman then brought out a Hold Harmless agreement because he will not allow Lesnar to be held legally responsible for what happens to Hunter at Summerslam. Heyman said if people are looking for a good wrestling match and two guys competing, that's not going to be the case. He said it's going to be an uncomfortable beating and one man suffering at the hands of a merciless individual, the most-dominant force to ever step into a WWE ring. Heyman noted one person doesn't agree with him - the greatest entertainer of all-time, Shawn Michaels. Heyman then asked Lesnar if Michaels is here tonight. "Yes, he is," Lesnar said. Heyman called out Michaels to come remind Lesnar why he thinks Hunter will survive Lesnar on Sunday. He then challenged Michaels's manhood by saying there's no shame in being afraid of Brock Lesnar. Heyman insulted people from Texas, which was the last straw for Michaels, whose music played.

Out came Michaels with eyes locked on Heyman and Lesnar. In the ring, Heyman shook hands with Lesnar after successfully goading Michaels out to the ring. Michaels hopped on the ring apron, surveyed the scene, and slowly entered the ring to stare at Lesnar, who smirked at him. The segment came to a stop with neither of the two sides budging. "Let's Go Texas" chant from the crowd to fill the time.

Suddenly, Triple H's music played. Hunter, still in his CEO clothes, removed his tie as he came out on-stage, then removed his jacket and made his way to the ring with eyes locked on Lesnar. In the ring, Lesnar breathed heavily in anticipation of getting Hunter in the ring six days before Summerslam. Hunter slowly walked toward the table separating the two men and Lesnar walked closer to the table to get within inches of Hunter's nose. "Triple H" chant as the two men had a stare down.

Hunter then leaned down and grabbed the contract on the table. Hunter flipped toward the page where he signs, signed it without taking his eyes off Lesnar, and it was official. Lesnar wanted to fight, but Heyman tried to calm him down that it's just a contract signing. Lesnar then signed the contract and chucked the contract at Hunter's chest before leaving the ring. Lesnar bounced up and down on the floor before circling the ring to leave. Lesnar continued to lock eyes with Hunter as Michaels and Hunter turned to watch Lesnar leave. The crowd booed Lesnar, who slowly made his way up the entrance ramp as Heyman guided Lesnar to the back.

[Q12] [Commercial Break]

Smackdown plug: The generic ad suggested WWE will determine a new #1 contender to the World Title on Friday's Smackdown.

Back from break, Cole recapped footage from the end of last week's Smackdown and said Del Rio will confront Booker T about Booker trying to cancel the Sheamus vs. Del Rio title match at Summerslam. Lawler then fed to a Tout video of fans reacting to Booker cancelling Sheamus vs. Del Rio. The selected fans followed Bruce Mitchell's guide of playing up WWE storylines to get on Raw.

Backstage: Shawn Michaels and Triple H were shown talking in the hallway. Michaels said he has something he has to get off his chest. He said Lesnar is on a whole 'nother level and he just wants Hunter to be careful. Michaels told Hunter that he and he alone has to beat Lesnar. Hunter said he can handle Lesnar, but Michaels cut him off and said Hunter knows where his heart is on this. Michaels walked off and Hunter grimaced.

Back to the announcers, Cole and Lawler wondered if Hunter can beat Lesnar on Sunday. Cole then fed to a video replay of the events concerning the WWE Title situation tonight.

Backstage, Matt Striker caught up with Big Show to ask how things tonight affect Summerslam. Suddenly, there was a commotion in the parking garage area. Shawn Michaels was trying to leave in his car, but Paul Heyman had cut him off. Brock Lesnar suddenly jumped Michaels from behind and pulled him out of his car. Lesnar "bumped the video feed" attacking Michaels, so the screen went black. Heyman and Lesnar talked trash during Lesnar's apparent beating of Michaels. They faded to commercial as Heyman shouted that this is just a taste.

[Commercial Break]

Moments Ago: Heyman set up Michaels for an ambush in the parking garage. They did not have an alternate camera shot to show Lesnar's "attack." Back live, various wrestlers and referees were trying to figure out what happened. A.J. Lee was shown freaking out, then Triple H entered the scene to ask what happened. No one had answers. Hunter asked A.J. what happened to Shawn and A.J. said Brock took Michaels away. Hunter slammed his fist on the back of Michaels's car, then stormed off.

Announcers: Cole and Lawler talked solemnly about the situation that unfolded in the parking garage. Suddenly, there was a commotion in the arena. Lesnar was shown dragging Michaels from the backstage area into the ring as Heyman followed closely behind. Lesnar bounced up and down, then slowly entered the ring. It's a battle of two hunters involving Hunter. In the ring, Michaels slowly stood up with his shirt ripped. Lesnar then dropped Michaels with an F5 center-ring. Lesnar continued to stalk his prey as the crowd chanted for Triple H.

[Q13] At the top of the hour, Lesnar slapped on his kimura lock submission. Hunter then stormed the ringside area as Heyman told Hunter to stop right there, otherwise Lesnar will snap Michaels's arm. Hunter sold conflict over the situation as Lesnar locked eyes with Hunter while awaiting instructions from Heyman. Lesnar then "snapped" Michaels's arm and Hunter stormed the ring to chase off Lesnar, who avoided Hunter and ran back to the stage.

On-stage, Heyman freaked about Lesnar breaking Michaels's arm. Lesnar just smiled as the ringside medic entered the ring to check on Michaels. Hunter checked on Michaels, who tried to get people off him as he writhed in pain. Lesnar teased re-entering the ring, but stopped half-way down the ramp and wagged his finger "no" toward Hunter. Hunter ripped off his shirt and told Lesnar they don't have to wait until Sunday, as they can fight right now. Raw signed off two minutes past the top of the hour with Lesnar smirking toward Hunter. This was followed by a very non-PG USA Network sneak-peek of a new movie to fill the usual over-run time.

FINAL THOUGHTS: Another reminder that Raw does not need to be three hours. Outside of that, strong hype for Lesnar-Hunter, even if it was stretched out a bit much (another problem with three-hour Raws) to the point of not being able to hit that crescendo customary from the Jim Ross era of PPV promotion.

***

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