WWE Raw Report CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 11/5: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of U.K. Raw - Cena first TV match in seven weeks
Nov 5, 2012 - 11:08:43 PM
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WWE Raw Supershow Results
November 5, 2012 - Episode #1,014
Taped in Birmingham, England
Aired on USA Network
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
This week's three-hour Raw taped earlier today in the U.K. opened with a new voice-over man narrating footage from last week's Raw when the Survivor Series teams were set for the PPV main event.
Earlier Today: Paul Heyman and The Miz were shown talking in the backstage area. Miz said he's not on the same page with Heyman and C.M. Punk, and he doesn't need either one of them. Miz then pulled himself off Team Punk at Survivor Series, saying he quits. Heyman grimaced, then Miz walked off. Heyman looked at the Survivor Series PPV poster featuring Miz, then the usual Raw intro video played.
The new voice-over man then overly-dramatically narrated clips on the heel ref Brad Maddox storyline and A.J. Lee/John Cena "scandal." The new voice-over man sets the wrong tone for a male-oriented wrestling show, making the show sound too much like a soap opera.
In-ring: Into the arena for the first time tonight, Rey Mysterio was on his way to the ring for an opening six-man tag match as Michael Cole and Jim Ross introduced the show. Already in the ring were R-Truth and Sin Cara. Out first for the heels was U.S. champion Antonio Cesaro, which led to a Tout exchange between Cesaro and R-Truth. The Prime Time Players then joined Cesaro for the match.
1 -- REY MYSTERIO & SIN CARA & R-TRUTH vs. U.S. champion ANTONIO CESARO & PRIME TIME PLAYERS (TITUS O'NEIL & DARREN YOUNG) -- six-man tag match
The heels had their way with Mysterio early on, but Rey slipped out of a powerbomb attempt from Titus and tagged in Cara. Rey and Cara then double-kicked Titus before Truth tagged in to work on Titus. This was followed by a mid-ring stand-off and Raw quietly went to break.
Back from break at 6:30, Truth smashed D-Young with a leg whip to retain control for the face trio. Young waited out the face trio's advantage, then brought in Titus, who seems to exude more confidence in his in-ring abilities with each passing match. Notable was Titus delivering four consecutive backbreakers to Rey and effectively pausing in-between each one to emphasize his offense.
[Q2] The crowd led a slow clap to rally Rey, who fought out of the heel corner, but Cesaro yanked him back to center-ring. No matter, as Rey countered Cesaro with a center-ring DDT. Truth took a tag and ran over Cesaro before delivering the Lie Detector. Truth taunted Titus, then brought him over the top rope to the outside.
Back in the ring, the action broke down before Sin Cara cleared D-Young to the outside. Cara then flew onto Cesaro setting up Rey for 619. Truth then hit Little Jimmy and covered Cesaro for the pin and the win. Cue up Rey & Cara mocking PTPers by doing their Millions and Millions of Dollars celebration dance.
WINNERS: Team Truth at 10:52. Basic follow-up on the Rey & Cara-PTP feud and continuing to develop Cesaro's first real U.S. Title feud against Truth.
Still to come: Brad Maddox attempts to explain his actions in the Hell in a Cell main event and Vickie claims to have compromising footage of John Cena and A.J. Lee.
Video: A very dramatic video played back from break on Jerry Lawler's heart attack. They made Lawler's heart attack seem like an angle with the presentation. Lawler returns to Raw next Monday on Raw.
Announcers: Cole re-visited the A.J./Cena issue through the eyes of Vickie Guerrero. ... Last Week: Vickie tried to get Cena to admit to an inappropriate relationship with A.J., but Cena stated his case explaining why it's not the case. On-camera, Ross said he is anxious to see this so-called "evidence."
In-ring: Justin Roberts introduced Vickie Guerrero to boos. Vickie walked out on-stage in a black dress and walked to the ring trying to speak over crowd boos. Vickie said she is thrilled that A.J. Lee has resigned as Raw GM because hanky-panky is not allowed in WWE. "We must act like professionals and we need to be honest, which is something John Cena has a problem with," she said.
Vickie introduced footage supporting her position that she believes Cena is lying about the nature of his relationship with A.J., then started to introduce a new clip, but John Cena's music played to a loud mixed reaction. Cena stomped out on-stage in his Celtics green gear after wearing black last month for Breast Cancer Awareness, then Cena marched to the ring and cut off Vickie. Cena said Vickie claims to run a clean show, but that is like him learning another wrestling move. "It's not going to happen," Cena said, attempting self-deprecation on his Five Moves of Doom.
Cena continued by going through Vickie's history of illicit relationships to gain power. He then noted the crowd has been chanting, "Who are you?" at Vickie, which was followed by Cena calling Vickie derogatory terms in English-speak. Vickie shut down Cena for trying to turn this on her, then introduced security footage showing A.J. leaving her hotel room in a bath robe. She was shown knocking on a door and entering. Back in the ring, Cena smiled and said that is nothing and means nothing.
Back to more footage. Vickie said this one is of the same room from a different angle. The footage showed Cena in a towel opening the door and hanging up a Do Not Disturb sign. "Yes! Yes! Yes!" response from the crowd. Back in the ring, Cena smiled before Vickie noted that must have been one heck of a business meeting. Cena said those were two different angles of two different rooms.
[Q3] Vickie then suggested they bring out A.J. to come defend herself in this matter. The crowd wanted to see A.J., but she only appeared on the Titantron. A.J., seething and very upset, told Vickie that she doesn't want her out there in the ring. Why? Because if she explains herself, she will give Vickie the beating of her life. A.J. noted Vickie will fire her and she will be out of a job, which means she won't be able to wrestle anymore.
Suddenly, Dolph Ziggler entered the shot and put his arm around A.J. Dolph said they all know what A.J. loves to do. In the ring, Vickie cackled and Cena bailed to go rescue his damsel in distress. Vickie continued to cackle like the witch in a broom factory in the GEICO commercials before thanking the audience. They cut to break.
Back live, Michael Cole plugged a relief fund for Hurricane Sandy victims.
Backstage: Paul Heyman was shown talking to someone, but they did not reveal the recipient of his message about The Miz being cowardly. Heyman told this person that Team Punk needs someone like this person. The camera pulled back to reveal Wade Barrett, whose presence popped the U.K. crowd. Barrett turned down Heyman's offer, just like last week, then said he's re-considered. Under one condition. Barrett said Heyman owes him.
In-ring: Daniel Bryan's music played to a huge reaction. Loud "Yes!" chants followed Bryan, who came out flanked by co-tag champion Kane. Justin Roberts introduced Bryan, then noted Cody Rhodes is already in the ring to face Bryan.
2 -- WWE tag champion DANIEL BRYAN (w/WWE tag champion Kane) vs. CODY RHODES (w/Damien Sandow)
Loud "Daniel Bryan" chant as the opening bell sounded. This was followed by loud "Yes!" chants from the pro-Bryan crowd. Cole then made it official that Barrett will be replacing Miz at Survivor Series. Bryan ripped off a series of kicks, then got the William Regal-in-the-U.K. investment with the crowd warming up for Bryan to deliver a decisive kick, but Rhodes blocked. The action spilled to the outside, where chaos ensued until Bryan delivered a suicide dive to Sandow. But, Cody smashed Bryan with a disaster kick on the outside. As the crowd picked up another "Daniel Bryan" chant, Rhodes delivered Cross Rhodes, stunning the crowd expecting a solid 10-minute Daniel Bryan match. Rhodes pinned Bryan for the win.
WINNER: Rhodes at 1:56. Ten minutes for dragged-out, going-nowhere Cena/Vickie/A.J. non-sense and two minutes for a match supported by a red-hot crowd? Classic WWE.
Post-match: Rhodes took the mic and gloated about his victory. He then noted Damien could beat Kane just as easily as he just beat Bryan. Sandow, who was selling confidence, progressively became less confident. "Now?" Sandow asked with the perfect tone. Kane then palmed Sandow by the head back into the ring. Sandow ran out the other side of the ring leading to break.
3 -- WWE tag champion KANE (w/WWE tag champion Daniel Bryan) vs. DAMIEN SANDOW (w/Cody Rhodes)
The action was joined in-progress back from break with Kane controlling the action. Since the crowd only got two minutes of Bryan in the ring, they started "Yes!" chants as Kane and Sandow exchanged control. On the outside, Bryan got his hands on Rhodes with repeated right hands, then the ref gave Bryan the boot. "No! No! No!" chants from the crowd. The ref then booted Rhodes to make it even.
Back in the ring, Kane and Sandow were one-on-one, and Sandow was quite concerned. Sandow begged off, then Kane whipped him hard into the corner turnbuckle. Kane then delivered a chokeslam center-ring. Kane covered Sandow and it was good for the win.
WINNER: Kane at 3:53.
Announcers: Cole and Ross re-visited Brad Maddox's actions costing Ryback the WWE Title at Hell in a Cell. Maddox speaks next.
Main Event plug: Sheamus vs. Wade Barrett on Barrett's home turf this Wednesday on Ion TV.
In-ring: Michael Cole was in the ring. Cole offered hyperbole on Maddox's role at Hell in a Cell, then introduced the heel ref. Maddox walked out dressed in street clothes, which consisted of matching gray pants and vest over a red flannel dress shirt. In the ring, Cole noted Maddox was called to WWE Headquarters this week to discuss his actions, which WWE replayed. Cole asked Maddox what was said to him by WWE and if he is working with Heyman and Punk.
After pausing, Maddox shook his head no. He said it was all him. Maddox said that was his plan. What? Pause. He continued that all his life, all he ever wanted to do was be a WWE wrestler. What? Pause. Maddox tried to find the words. A "Feed Me More" chant filled the gap. Maddox said he spent years trying to become a WWE star, but everyone shut the door in his face. He said he sent tapes to the front office, went to try-outs, went to Raw and Smackdown live events, and once paid $2,000 for a try-out. "Two thousand dollars!" he said. After all of that, he was given a chance...with a Developmental contract.
Maddox continued that apparently even down there, he wasn't good enough. Why? Because he's only six-feet-tall and isn't a freak, giant, monster, doesn't wear a mask, or flip three times in the air. The crowd responded with a "You Can't Wrestle" chant. Maddox continued that even when WWE officials told him that he would never, never, never, never make it to the main WWE roster, his dream didn't die. In fact, it got stronger. "Because I want to be somebody!" he said with his voice climbing a few octaves.
[Q5 -- second hour] So, he made a vow to himself to do whatever it takes to get to WWE. That's why he became a referee. And, when Raw went to three hours and when A.J. Lee called him for a job, all he needed was one chance to make an impact. Maddox said he knows what he did wasn't right and Punk had no idea what he was going to do; Punk was just as surprised as Ryback was. Maddox said his actions were simply driven by his desire to be somebody. "Feed Me More" chant from the crowd. Maddox shouted over the crowd that he's famous now and people even know his name in England. "Who are ya?" chant followed.
Maddox said his dream is to be a WWE star. That's why he wants a contract and a match with Ryback. Maddox shot a cocky look and said no one will forget his name now. "Thank you," he said over "Feed Me More" chants.
No Chance then played to bring out Vince McMahon on-stage to a raucous reception. McMahon strutted on-stage, then asked Maddox if he really wants a WWE contract and a match against Ryback. He said Maddox has a death wish, is lying through his teeth, and is working with Heyman and Punk. McMahon vowed to get to the bottom of this. He said he will give Maddox a $1.0 million contract if he beats Ryback...next week on Raw. He growled at Maddox to get out of his ring.
McMahon then went backstage and retrieved Vickie Guerrero. McMahon brought Vickie out on-stage and quizzed her on what's gone on with the WWE Title situation as of late. He asked Vickie why she would reward Punk with a night-off defending the WWE Title at Survivor Series when things are the way they are with Maddox. McMahon led Vickie in naming a new match for Punk, but Vickie missed the clue, sheepishly selecting Dolph Ziggler. McMahon said he doesn't deserve it, then McMahon set her up to name Ryback. McMahon continued that Vickie is thinking that isn't good enough because it should be a triple threat match. Vickie wanted to add Dolph, but McMahon said he will fire her on the spot if she says Dolph. The crowd laughed, then Vickie said the person McMahon is thinking about is involved in a bad scandal right now. McMahon cut her off and asked if "he" is the person who stepped aside for Ryback at Hell in a Cell and went to a draw at Night of Champions. Vickie whispered "John Cena," so McMahon asked her to speak louder. "John Cena!" Vickie said to a mixed reaction. So, it's Punk vs. Ryback vs. Cena at Survivor Series. Ross said Survivor Series has been turned upside-down as Sheamus's music played to bring out the World Hvt. champion for the next match.
Back live, Sheamus was in the ring sporting a bright red bruise on his pale chest. The Miz was then introduced as Sheamus's opponent tonight. As Big Show's music played for a closer look at Sheamus, Ross noted Team Punk is no more at Survivor Series and they will try to sort this out. Big Show sat down at the announce table for commentary, then the opening bell sounded.
4 -- SHEAMUS vs. THE MIZ
Sheamus started with a shoulder knockdown as Show remained silent on commentary, ignoring Cole's initial line of questioning. Show then became agitated at Cole's next line of questioning as Sheamus controlled the match against Miz. Cole then transitioned to the Survivor Series PPV thrown into disarray tonight. Cole noted Barrett has replaced Miz and now there's a question of whether Punk will even have a team. Show glared at the announcers, not enjoying a discussion not involving his World Title defense against Sheamus at the PPV.
[Q6] Sheamus continued to dominate Miz before setting up Miz for ten big forearm strikes to the chest. Ross noted the last one had some extra mustard on it before Sheamus shoved Miz off the ring apron to the floor. On the outside, Sheamus eyed Show, which gave Miz an opening to blast Sheamus.
Back in the ring, Miz covered Sheamus for a two count as Show chuckled. "That was great," Show laughed. Show mentioned a table (potential foreshadowing for TLC in two months) as Miz slowed down the pace in the ring. Off to break.
Back from break, Miz was in control of the action. Show claimed to have psychologically damaged Sheamus, saying he humbled him and forever changed him after (a) kicking out of the Brogue Kick and (b) delivering two KO Punches to Sheamus's face. Show then intimidated Cole with his fist as Miz retained control. Miz nailed Reality Check for a two count, then punted Sheamus in the chest to keep Sheamus grounded.
Miz slowly stalked Sheamus for a corner move follow-up, but Sheamus cut him off and mounted a comeback. Sheamus delivered a second-rope battering ram for a nearfall, but Miz cut him off with a kick to the knees, scored with a snap DDT, and scored a close two count. Show chuckled, saying Sheamus would be ruined if he lost to Miz.
Miz teased the Skullcrushing Finale, but Sheamus broke free. Miz then tried to charge Sheamus, but Sheamus intercepted with White Noise. Sheamus then went to his corner and set up for the Brogue Kick, which he connected with. Not clean, but effective for a three count, prompting Cole to declare that Sheamus is rolling heading into Survivor Series. Post-match: Big Show very simply stood up, held his World Title belt in the air, and stood his ground at the announce table as Sheamus looked on from inside the ring.
WINNER: Sheamus at 14:42. A fine extended-length singles match to continue building up Sheamus vs. Show II in two weeks. Miz is stuck, though, constantly going up and down on the WWE Elevator without making progress.
[Q7] Backstage: The camera zoomed in on McMahon's office. Dolph Ziggler was shown pacing outside, then Vickie Guerrero walked out. Where's the security footage? Vickie told Ziggler that he's been named leader of Team Ziggler at Survivor Series, then C.M. Punk barged into the conversation. Punk said the only reason why he's captain of the team is because "this cranky old bastard" is trying to screw him. Punk said McMahon is doing this because he's an egomaniac. Vickie tried to calm him down, then noted she booked a tag main event for tonight: Punk and Ziggler facing a tag team formed the very first time... Cena and Ryback. "What?" Ziggler asked Vickie. "What is wrong with her?" Punk asked Ziggler over and over. Ziggler and Vickie stomped off, then Punk seethed and contemplated barging into McMahon's office to have a word with the boss, acting like a cartoon WWE heel, with his sophistication completely stripped away to paint with wide brush strokes.
Vignette: All sorts of bright-light adjectives flashed on the screen to introduce a new Las Vegas lounge singer-inspired character titled Fandangoo. Apparently this is Johnny Curtis's new gimmick. How unfortunate. Cue up Derrick Bateman with the "yeah, that sums it up" tweet on the vignette: "FANDANGOO can dance AND get you movie tickets. #Raw"
Backstage: Sheamus was shown talking to William Regal. He thanked Regal for bringing him along in his career, then vowed to regain the World Title from Big Show at Survivor Series. Regal said they should go grab a pint.
Announcers: Cole and Ross transitioned to the latest from Cena/A.J.-Vickie earlier tonight, focusing on security camera footage of A.J. walking down the hotel hallway in a bath robe and Cena denying Vickie's claimed evidence.
In-ring: Eve's music played to bring out the Divas champion for in-ring action. Eve did a fake pageant wave on the way to the ring, then Aksana came out to join Eve for tag action. Raw went to break prior to the babyface ring intros.
5 -- Divas champion EVE TORRES & AKSANA vs. LAYLA & KAITLYN
Back from break, Layla was on the way to the ring waving the Union Jack flag. Kaitlyn was already in the ring prior to the bell sounding. The heels controlled Layla early and often as Kaitlyn looked for a tag from the apron. Kaitlyn eventually got the tag, cleaned house, and pinned the Divas champion clean. Afterward, Layla acted nice to Kaitlyn and celebrated the victory with her.
WINNERS: Team Kaitlyn at 4:58.
Backstage: Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez were talking strategy. Rosa Mendes then "accidentally" bumped into Del Rio, who said there's no problem with her bumping into him. They parted ways, then Del Rio and El Local walked toward the ring as Cole plugged Del Rio in singles action next.
Back from break, Kofi Kingston's music played to bring out the Intercontinental champion. Justin Roberts handed the mic over to Ricardo, who then introduced Del Rio. Ross shouted out to Jerry Lawler as Del Rio made his way to the ring before the announcers re-visited Del Rio vs. Randy Orton last Friday on Smackdown. The video replay continued with footage of the two fighting around the catering area. Cole plugged Orton vs. Del Rio in a Falls Count Anywhere match tomorrow night on Super Smackdown.
6 -- IC champion KOFI KINGSTON vs. ALBERTO DEL RIO -- non-title match
As the two men locked up, Cole and Ross discussed Kofi and Del Rio being part of the Team Ziggler vs. Team Foley Survivor Series match in two weeks. Cole noted Foley needs a fifth man because Ryback is in the WWE Title match. After some back and forth, Del Rio controlled the action, then bumped Kofi off the ring apron into the barricade on the outside. Del Rio continued the attack, then rolled Kofi back into the ring at the top of the hour.
[Q9 -- third hour] Del Rio continued the assault back in the ring. Ricardo tried to engage the crowd by taunting them as Del Rio maintained control, then Del Rio tried to yank off Kofi's arm with a shoulder-yank across the top rope, using a full five count. But, Del Rio got cocky taking too long to follow up, allowing Kofi to avoid a corner attack and build momentum.
Kofi called for Trouble in Paradise at 6:30, but Del Rio ducked. Del Rio then walked into SOS for a close two count. Kofi tried TIP again, but Del Rio ducked. Del Rio called for the end, but Randy Orton's music played. Del Rio looked toward the entrance, but no sign of Orton. Kofi then rolled up Del Rio from behind for the win.
Post-match: Kofi scampered out of the ring and Del Rio freaked out in the ring as Kofi's music played. Suddenly, the crowd popped as Orton entered the ring from behind. Del Rio then turned around and ate an RKO center-ring. Orton stared down at Del Rio, setting the stage for their FCA match tomorrow night on Super Smackdown. A final hard sell for the Smackdown special tomorrow night concluded the segment.
WINNER: Kingston at 7:47.
Announcers: Cole and Ross recapped events thus far tonight, including Brad Maddox explaining his actions against Ryback at Hell in a Cell eight days ago. This led to a video replay of Brad's speech about dreaming to be a WWE star by any means necessary. Cole and Ross noted Maddox faces Ryback next week on Raw for a chance to earn a $1.0 million contract.
In-ring: Santino's music played to keep the assembly line going of interchangeable matches in the three-hour format. Santino and Zack Ryder skipped out to the ring leading to break.
Back from break, Santino and Ryder were dancing in the ring. New music played to bring out Primo and Epico, accompanied by Rosa Mendes. Ross plugged Lawler returning to Raw next week before the bell sounded.
7 -- SANTINO & ZACK RYDER vs. PRIMO & EPICO (w/Rosa Mendes)
As the action started, Cole noted Ryback will be in a tag match for the first time tonight in the main event. The camera zoomed in on Santino wearing new blue boots as he worked on Primo with actual wrestling holds. But, Santino missed with an armdrag, smiled, and called for a time-out. Instead, Primo tagged Santino in the mouth. The crowd chanted for Ryder, but Santino remained in the match. Santino then tagged in Ryder, who scored a nearfall on Primo.
[Q10] Primo and Epico took control on Ryder, who tried to break free to tag in Santino, but the Colons retained control as Rosa taunted Ryder from the outside. Ryder eventually broke free with a neckbreaker to Primo, which brought in Santino and Epico for their teams. The action broke down, including Ryder delivering a Rough Ryder to clear Primo from the ring. In the ring, Santino yanked out his Cobra and struck Epico for the pin and the win. Cue up the post-match trombone celebration as Cole hyped the team as fun winners.
WINNERS: Team Santino at 5:05.
Still to come tonight: Punk & Ziggler vs. Cena & Ryback in the main event. Ross said it's first-time-ever.
[Commercial Break. A 15-second commercial aired for "Maximum Conviction" starring Stone Cold and Steven Seagal out tomorrow on DVD & Blu-ray.]
In-ring: Back from break, Brodus Clay's music played to bring out Brodus Clay, Cameron, and Naomi for another "fun-time" segment. Cole said fun & games are now over, as Wade Barrett's music played to bring out the home-country star with extra swagger in his step. Cole plugged Barrett vs. Sheamus this Wednesday on "Main Event" before the bell sounded.
8 -- WADE BARRETT vs. BRODUS CLAY
Clay controlled early on as the announcers discussed Team Foley needing a fifth member to go opposite Team Ziggler, which now includes Barrett. Barrett suddenly delivered the Winds of Change before pounding on Clay with straight rights. The crowd turned the match into a football atmosphere as Cameron & Naomi tried to fight against the pro-Barrett crowd.
Clay came back with a headbutt, but he couldn't take Barrett off his feet. Clay nailed a big splash in the corner, but missed with a second try. Barrett then kicked Clay in the gut before warming up to deliver the Souvenir Elbow. Barrett with the pin for the win. See ya Wednesday night on Ion.
WINNER: Barrett at 3:00 flat.
Still to come: Ziggler & Punk vs. Cena & Ryback in the main event.
[Q11] [Commercial Break]
Back from break, a graphic flashed on the screen plugging Jerry Lawler returning to Raw next week. Ross said he belongs out here.
In-ring: 3MB's music played to bring out Heath Slater and Jinder Mahal in leather pants and leather jackets. No Drew McIntyre, who Cole said is not here tonight on Raw. Slater and Mahal did some air-guitar action in the ring, then the Usos came out on-stage via their traditional pre-war dance.
9 -- HEATH SLATER (w/Jinder Mahal) vs. JEY USO (w/Jimmy Uso)
And, the third hour of Raw has officially turned into Superstars. Uso was aggressive early on, but ran into a corner boot from Slater. Some of the vocal males picked up a "3MB" chant as Slater controlled the action. Uso then came back with a standing sidekick before calling for the end. Uso went to the top turnbuckle for a big splash, but Slater got his knees up to block. Slater then delivered an elevated spike DDT for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Slater at 3:54.
Video Game plug: C.M. Punk in "WWE '13." Ross and Cole narrated footage of Attitude Era situations in the video game. Cole plugged potential match-ups like Rock-Austin or Punk-Austin or Rock-Sheamus or Ryback-Taker.
Up Next: It's the main event of Punk & Ziggler vs. Cena & Ryback.
[Q12] Back from break, Cult of Personality played to a loud reaction to bring out WWE champion C.M. Punk, along with Paul Heyman. As Punk made his way to the ring, Cole noted Punk will tie Diesel (Kevin Nash) as ninth-longest-reigning champion in WWE history next week on Raw. Ross also noted that next week could be Punk's final Raw as WWE champion.
Once in the ring, Punk took the mic and said he beat the undefeated Ryback eight nights ago. Punk said people have tainted his win because they're jealous and have further accused him or Heyman of associating with "rogue referee" Brad Mad-DOX. Punk said Mad-DOX spoke the truth earlier tonight on Raw and now Vince McMahon has decided to continue his tradition of screwing his best Superstar at Survivor Series (Bret Hart reference). Punk said the crowd wants either Cena or Punk to take the title from him at Survivor Series, stopping him at 364 days. But, he has proven for 350 days that he is better than everyone, better than anyone on the roster, and better than anyone worldwide who wants to face him in the ring. Punk promised to celebrate 364 days as WWE champion at Survivor Series. He said his reign of excellence and dominance will not be stopped. Punk vowed to provide fact that he is the Best in the World. Heyman applauded him emphatically, then Dolph Ziggler's music interrupted Punk's spotlight time. As Ziggler came out, Cole and Ross introduced a Team Foley vs. Team Ziggler graphic with an empty fifth slot on Team Foley.
After Ziggler and Punk posed separately in the ring, John Cena's music played to a mixed reaction. Cena smiled on-stage, saluted the crowd, and stormed the ring. Cena and Punk stared each other down as Cole hyped the Survivor Series three-way main event as one of the most-anticipated in history. Once in the ring, Cena pointed to the ring entrance and welcomed out Ryback for feeding time. Ross and Cole traded questions on how this combination will co-exist in the main event, which led to break.
10 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK (w/Paul Heyman) & DOLPH ZIGGLER vs. JOHN CENA & RYBACK
The bell sounded as soon as Raw returned from break. And, it's Cena vs. Punk starting things off. Ross called this a treat and first-time-ever match. Ziggler then tagged in to take aim at Cena, who slowed the pace. Cole then noted this is Cena's first televised match in seven weeks, which should have been stressed at the outset since his elbow injury was turned into a huge deal on TV the last two months.
[Q13 -- over-run] Ziggler controlled the action at the top of the hour, drawing applause when he landed eight or nine elbow drops in a row, but could only score a two count. Punk then re-entered and worked on Cena as Ryback remained on the ring apron. Cena suddenly delivered a desperation Attitude Adjustment, but he delivered it in a way that looked like a basic fireman's carry drop. Cena then tried to tag in Ryback, but Zigs tagged in and cut off Cena.
Punk and Ziggler went back to exchanging tags to wear down Cena as Ryback remained on the outside. Cena then powered Punk in the air into an electric chair, but he couldn't make a tag to Ryback. So, the heels resumed control in the corner. Ziggler tried to finish off Cena with a top-rope dropkick - which Punk audibly questioned from the ring apron - but Cena moved and Ziggler ate the mat. This allowed Cena to finally tag in Ryback at 9:10. Punk also tagged in and took massive offense from Ryback. Ryback then lifted Ziggler into the air before press-slamming him on top of Punk. Clothesline to Ziggler cleared him. "Feed Me More" chant as Ryback measured Punk for a giant clothesline. Ryback then called for the end and hoisted Punk in the air for Shell Shock. No low-blow from referee Charles Robinson. Ryback pinned Punk for the win.
Post-match: Ross and Cole wondered aloud if that will be the outcome next Sunday at Survivor Series. In the ring, Ryback stood tall in the ring as Cena recovered to the ring apron. Ryback chanted, "Feed Me More" in Cena's face, then Cena entered the ring to stare down Ryback. Ryback did some Goldberg facial flinches, then chanted, "Feed Me More" again in Cena's face. Raw went off the air eight minutes past the hour with Ryback chanting and Cena standing opposite each other.
WINNERS: Team Ryback at 10:14. This was Ryback getting his win back on Punk in a tag match format that would have been the Survivor Series main event finish before WWE changed the main event. It also planted seeds for a potential Cena-Ryback feud down the line. As for Survivor Series, it remains to be seen if this quick change to Punk-Cena-Ryback at Survivor Series takes root with the audience or if WWE's poor planning leads to poor performance in PPV business.
FINAL THOUGHTS: When you look closely at this show, it's mind-boggling some of the things they did/continue to do. John Cena was inserted in his first televised match since returning from injury and it wasn't a big deal, the A.J./Cena nonsense has completely overshadowed what should be a huge deal that Cena gets another WWE Title shot and has a chance to stop Punk before he hits one full year as WWE champ, and Ryback should have marched to the ring and destroyed Brad Maddox for costing him the WWE Title at Hell in a Cell. Of course, WWE has presented the WWE Title as worthless since Ryback didn't care about his title loss last week and Cena has had mild interest in the title the past several months. So, it's another example of WWE's maddening approach to watering down the value of titles that have historically drawn money in pro wrestling while continuing to push these awful TNA junkyard storylines. It shows where WWE's priorities are for filling TV time in the three-hour Raw era.
THE TORCH REACHES MORE COMBAT ENTERTAINMENT FANS THAN ANY OTHER SOURCE
PWTorch editor Wade Keller has covered pro wrestling full time since 1987 starting with the Pro Wrestling Torch print newsletter. PWTorch.com launched in 1999 and the PWTorch Apps launched in 2008.
He has conducted "Torch Talk" insider interviews with Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Steve Austin, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Eric Bischoff, Jesse Ventura, Lou Thesz, Jerry Lawler, Mick Foley, Jim Ross, Paul Heyman, Bruno Sammartino, Goldberg, more.
He has interviewed big-name players in person incluiding Vince McMahon (at WWE Headquarters), Dana White (in Las Vegas), Eric Bischoff (at the first Nitro at Mall of America), Brock Lesnar (after his first UFC win).
He hosted the weekly Pro Wrestling Focus radio show on KFAN in the early 1990s and hosted the Ultimate Insiders DVD series distributed in retail stories internationally in the mid-2000s including interviews filmed in Los Angeles with Vince Russo & Ed Ferrara and Matt & Jeff Hardy. He currently hosts the most listened to pro wrestling audio show in the world, (the PWTorch Livecast, top ranked in iTunes)
REACHING 1 MILLION+ UNIQUE USERS PER MONTH
500 MILLION CLICKS & LISTENS PER YEAR
MILLIONS OF PWTORCH NEWSLETTERS SOLD
PWTorch offers a VIP membership for $10 a month (or less with an annual sub). It includes nearly 25 years worth of archives from our coverage of pro wrestling dating back to PWTorch Newsletters from the late-'80s filled with insider secrets from every era that are available to VIPers in digital PDF format and Keller's radio show from the early 1990s.
Also, new exclusive top-shelf content every day including a new VIP-exclusive weekly 16 page digital magazine-style (PC and iPad compatible) PDF newsletter packed with exclusive articles and news.
The following features come with a VIP membership which tens of thousands of fans worldwide have enjoyed for many years...
-New Digital PWTorch Newsletter every week
-3 New Digital PDF Back Issues from 5, 10, 20 years ago
-Over 60 new VIP Audio Shows each week
-Ad-free access to all PWTorch.com free articles
-VIP Forum access with daily interaction with PWTorch staff and well-informed fellow wrestling fans
-Tons of archived audio and text articles
-Decades of Torch Talk insider interviews in transcript and audio formats with big name stars. **SIGN UP FOR VIP ACCESS HERE**