WWE Raw Report CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 3/5: Ongoing "virtual-time" coverage of live Raw - Michaels returns to Raw, Rock-Cena in Cena's hometown
Mar 5, 2012 - 10:05:26 PM
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WWE Raw Supershow Results
March 5, 2012 - Episode #979
Live in Boston, Mass.
Aired on USA Network
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
This week's live WWE Raw started with a live shot inside the arena. After Michael Cole introduced the show, Shawn Michaels's music hit to bring out Michaels, who Cole called Mr. WrestleMania. The crowd popped for Michaels, who danced on-stage, posed on the entrance ramp, and made his way to the ring to start the show. As Michaels completed his entrance, Cole and Jerry Lawler talked about Smackdown GM Teddy Long running the show tonight
In the ring, Michaels thanked the crowd for the "H-B-K" chant because it allows him to catch his breath since he's not used to the entrance. Michaels turned his attention to Triple H, noting things got a little heated between them a few weeks ago. He said he just desperately wanted Hunter to face The Undertaker and beat The Streak at WrestleMania. Michaels said it's all water under the bridge now, but he's here tonight to find out why Hunter changed his mind on facing Taker at Mania. Cue up Hunter's theme music to bring out Triple H in a suit.
In the ring, Hunter hugged Michaels before the two men waited out various crowd chants. Michaels said he knows he was tough on Hunter a few weeks ago, but he just wanted Hunter to take the match. He said he took every cheap shot he could think of, but Hunter still resisted him. He said he's amazed that Hunter didn't budge. "This man is an oak, I tell you," Michaels said. He said Hunter is a man of honor and integrity. Even in the face of calling Hunter a coward, Hunter resisted. But, then, something made Hunter change his mind and he needs to know why. Hunter, looking very sleepy, blinked as Michaels said Undertaker must have said something so degrading and so insulting that it made him change his mind.
Hunter paused for an "Undertaker" chant and tried to speak, but Michaels cut him off and said he wants to see the footage from when Hunter broke down and said he would take the match. They cut to Raw from two weeks ago when Hunter denied Taker yet again before Taker told him he knows Shawn is better than him, prompting Hunter to accept the match. Back live, Michaels was staring at Hunter's shoulder as Hunter was looking toward the video screen. Hunter looked down at the mat, then turned slightly to Michaels. Hunter paused, then tried to speak again, but Michaels cut him off. "So, that's all it took?!" Michaels asked. He said all Taker had to do was say Michaels is better than him.
Hunter paused to find the words again, then Hunter slowly told him it has nothing to do with who's better than the other. He said he's tired of it. He's tired of listening to it. He's tired of listening to people like Taker talk behind Michaels's back that Michaels couldn't get the job done. He's tired of people saying Michaels is a failure. He's tired of hearing people say Michaels couldn't get the job done because he really wasn't that good. And, it eats him up because he knows Michaels is the greatest in-ring performer of all-time. It pains him beyond measure to look at Michaels as a loser. That's why he's going to take the match and finish it. He's going to end The Undertaker, The Streak, and an era. The crowd booed in the background. Hunter said he's going to do what everyone says Michaels couldn't do. He's going to do it for himself and for Michaels.
[Q2] Michaels sarcastically thanked him for that. He said he thought they had a problem, but, like always, Hunter in his nice suit has everything under control. Michaels said it hurt him last year to look Hunter in the eyes and tell him he couldn't get the job done. Then, he watched Hunter "completely dominate" The Undertaker and show why he's The Game. But, then Hunter lost and he was right. This year in Hell in a Cell, he knows who's going to win and he'll be right again. Michaels teased leaving the ring before returning to the ring. He said he forgot to tell Hunter why he knows it: he's been made special referee. Michaels patted Hunter on the shoulder, then left the ring. Hunter glared after Michaels, who disappeared to the back.
Still to come tonight: Cole and Lawler plugged Rock-Cena confrontation and a main event tag of WWE champion C.M. Punk & Sheamus vs. World Hvt. champion Daniel Bryan & Chris Jericho.
In-ring: Back from break, Santino's music played to bring out a U.S. Title challenger to Jack Swagger. Before Santino could finish his intro, Vickie Guerrero interrupted. She introduced Swagger, who was accompanied by Dolph Ziggler.
1 -- U.S. champion JACK SWAGGER (w/Vickie Guerrero & Dolph Ziggler) vs. SANTINO -- U.S. Title match
Swagger was sporting a new haircut, like an 1800s western movie villain. After the bell sounded, John Laurinaitis and David Otunga came to ringside despite Laurinaitis not running Raw tonight. The heels ran interference and Swagger dropped Santino with the Swagger Bomb, but Santino kicked out. After the kick-out, Teddy Long's music played to bring out Long, Kofi Kingston, and Aksana. The two GMs argued ringside before Raw went to break.
Back live, Swagger was working over Santino while Cole reset the cast of characters ringside. Santino made a comeback, then Laurinaitis hopped on the ring apron to argue with the ref. Long yanked down Laurinaitis, then Laurinaitis and Long got into it. Santino tried a finisher, but Ziggler smacked him from the ring apron. Santino then dropped Ziggler with The Cobra to clear him from the ring apron. Aksana then got into it with Vickie ringside. In the chaos ringside, Long shoved down Laurinaitis. In the ring, Santino countered an anklelock with a quick roll-up and scored a three count for the win. Santino wins the U.S. Title.
[Q3] Post-match: Laurinaitis grabbed a mic and tried to take over his show, but Long ripped the mic away from Laurinaitis and called for security to take Laurinaitis away. Cue up the local independent guys to come ringside as security to escort Laurinaitis and Otunga out of the building. "I'll get you, Teddy!" Laurinaitis screamed. Long then told Justin Roberts to re-announce Santino as new U.S. champion. Santino choked up and let the tears flow to sell the moment. Santino then led a trumpet celebration to cap off the victory.
WINNER: Santino at 6:40 to capture the U.S. Title. Another chaotic situation building to whatever GM vs. GM match they come up with for WrestleMania.
Up Next: Rock's History Lesson #1 from Boston.
[Commercial Break. A random new WWE/Kmart commercial aired. It featured Sheamus walking a family through a backstage arena setting plugging WWE merchandise.]
Boston Harbor "Earlier Today:" Rock was shown on the Titantron in a pre-taped video. Rock said he has finally come back to Boston. Rock told John Cena gets some much-needed history lessons tonight. In 1773, the people of Boston had enough of the British and the people started a revolution. Tonight, they start The Rock Revolution. Back then, the people threw England's tea into the harbor. Rock said they're going to take all of Cena's trash and hot garbage right into the harbor. There goes a t-shirt. And, an alarm clock. Rock tossed out some "midget shorts." And, a garden gnome. Rock said there's a man who actually has this in his front yard right now. Next, a John Cena wristband. But, his favorite, is a John Cena cologne. "They actually make this crap," Rock said. He said this smells like fear, Fruity Pebbles, and opossum piss.
Rock told Cena he can take all his hot garbage that he's been shoving down people's throats, roll it all up into a ball, and stick it straight up Cena's rooty-tooty fruity ass. Rock said they're going all across Boston until they end up right in the middle of the ring. He told a jabroni off-camera to go clean up all that Cena trash. He said the people's party begins tonight.
2 -- ALICIA FOX vs. EVE
Back in the arena, Alicia Fox was in the ring as Kelly Kelly was ringside to discuss her feud with Eve and her Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards nomination. Eve then came out to boos to face A. Fox. Eve made short work of Fox with a roll-up after 35 seconds.
Post-match: Eve glared toward Kelly before Zack Ryder's music played. Ryder hobbled out on-stage with a cane to support him after being off TV for a few weeks selling injuries from Kane. Ryder told Eve he's glad they never hooked up, saying it's broskis before hoeskis. Ryder did his catchphrase, leaving Eve to try to block out the "hoeski" chants. Cole mocked Ryder, claiming Ryder had a weak comeback after weeks of sitting at home.
WINNER: Eve at 0:38.
Next: Cena will speak candidly on The Rock. They showed Cena sitting alone in an empty TD Garden earlier in the day to set up his interview.
[Q4] Backstage: After the break, Eve caught up with Ryder to try to tell him something. Eve couldn't find the words, so she planted a big kiss on Ryder. Ryder was suddenly not so upset. Eve smirked and walked off, leaving Ryder with stars in his eyes.
Announcers: Lawler recapped the earlier announcement of Shawn Michaels being referee for Taker-Hunter and Michaels already knowing who's going to win. They showed the WM28 logo hanging in the arena before Cole fed to comments from earlier today from Cena.
Earlier Today: Cena was shown sitting alone in the arena soaking it all in. Cena looked up at the WM28 logo to talk about champions being crowned, the end of an era, and Legends remembered. He said all eyes will be focused on one match, though. Cena said despite his personal differences with Rock, he is the most successful wrestler in WWE history. Rock said he came back, but only after finding a worthy opponent, him. Cena quietly said he doesn't intend to just be happy to be there, but he needs to win. Cena said he grew up around here and Boston is now known as the City of Champions. It had been the City of Heartbreak before that. And, the most heartbreaking thing he can remember is the New England Patriots winning 18 games in a row before losing the Super Bowl to the N.Y. Giants. He said no one remembers second place.
Cena said he's done wonderful things in WWE, but WrestleMania 28 is everything. If he doesn't win, he becomes another name in Rock's notebook. But, if he can win, if he can walk into Rock's backyard on the greatest stage of them all and have his hand raised, then he wins the Big One. He said this is a match - an event - that will make history. It is what it's supposed to be - the most successful event in the history of WWE. Cena said no one will remember second place, though. "That's why I need to win," Cena said. "That's why WrestleMania is so important." He said it's sink or swim; all or nothing. Cena called it his legacy and once-in-a-lifetime. They showed Cena staring up at the WM28 banner one more time.
Back live, Lawler said it's clear this is the biggest match of his life. Up Next: Punk & Sheamus vs. Bryan & Jericho in tag action set up by Teddy Long.
Smackdown plug: Kane returned to target Randy Orton, but, why? Plus, Laurinaitis takes over as Smackdown GM for one night.
In-ring: Cult of Personality played to bring out WWE champion C.M. Punk for the top-of-the-second-hour main event tag match. Cole recapped Chris Jericho attacking Punk on last week's Raw, which should have Punk smarting this week. After the video replay, Sheamus came out to join Punk in the ring.
[Q5 -- second hour] At the top of the hour. Daniel Bryan and A.J. emerged on-stage. "Yes! Yes! Yes!" Bryan shouted toward the crowd on the way to the ring. Cole hyped Bryan for continuing to win matches before Lawler noted they are tainted wins. The arena lights then shut off momentarily leading to Chris Jericho's entrance. Cole sent out a challenge to the fans to pick the Best Wrestler In the World - Punk or Jericho?
3 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK & SHEAMUS vs. World Hvt. champion DANIEL BRYAN (w/A.J.) & CHRIS JERICHO
Sheamus landed ten forearm strikes to Bryan's chest early in the match. Punk then tagged in to work on Bryan, but Jericho kicked Punk from behind on the ring apron to target Punk's injured back. Jericho then tagged in and played to the crowd before Raw went to break.
Back from break, Jericho was working over Punk in the ring. Cole read off some tweets on who's the Best in the World before Punk broke free from Jericho and hot-tagged Sheamus, who ran over Jericho with power offense. Sheamus landed a bodyslam, ran over Bryan, and dropped Jericho with the Irish Curse backbreaker for a two count. Sheamus then went up top, but Bryan distracted him, allowing Jericho to dropkick Sheamus to the floor. On the floor, Bryan smashed Sheamus with a running dropkick.
Back in the ring, Jericho went to work on Sheamus. Cole plugged another history video from Rock after this match. Also of note, WWE flashed a series of promotional items on a lower-third graphic and got the name of Edge's WWE Studios movie wrong, calling it "Breaking the Rules" instead of "Bending the Rules." In the ring, Punk took a hot tag and went after Bryan, who also tagged into the match. Punk sold the back injury, but went up top for a Macho Man elbow drop and connected for a nearfall.
The action broke down moments later with all four men in the ring. Sheamus tried the Celtic Cross on Bryan, but Jericho interfered. Bryan and Sheamus then collided ringside. Back in the ring, Jericho teased the Walls of Jericho on Punk, but Punk countered with a roll-up. Apparently in-between two and three, Jericho managed to switch the momentum and score a three count. Jericho immediately ran out of the ring to grab the WWE Title belt and point to the belt, telling Punk it will be his fate at WrestleMania. Jericho then slid the title belt to Punk, who sold frustration.
WINNERS: Jericho & Bryan at 11:54.
[Q6] Earlier Today: The Rock stood next to a Paul Revere statue for History Lesson #2. He asked what if it were Cena instead of Paul Revere leading the American Revolution. Rock slapped a Cena cut-out figure before noting if Cena were around in the 1700s, he would invent a time machine to travel back in time to slap around Cena. He said Benjamin Franklin and the women of Boston would have been enamored with Rock. Rock then sang his own version of Yankee Doodle to insult Cena some more. The musical number got a pop live. Rock said if Revere were alive today, he would be riding through the streets of Boston shouting, "The Rock is coming, The Rock is coming." He vowed to whip Cena at WrestleMania before noting he's coming to TD Garden to confront Cena tonight.
Announcers: Cole and Lawler recapped John Laurinaitis's involvement earlier in the show. They cut to a clip of Long shoving down Laurinaitis, who flopped, before Santino pinned Swagger to capture the U.S. Title. They showed Long giving Laurinaitis the boot from Raw to conclude the replay.
In-ring: The Miz came out to the ring sporting a new t-shirt. Justin Roberts announced this is a singles match as Cole recapped Miz's struggles to find himself on the WrestleMania card. As teased on Twitter before Raw, Big Show came out to face Miz. Cole noted Show vs. Cody Rhodes was booked for WrestleMania last week on Smackdown.
4 -- BIG SHOW vs. THE MIZ
The bell sounded, Miz bailed from the ring, and IC champion Cody Rhodes came out on-stage to embarrass Big Show some more. Rhodes said he doesn't have another clip of Show losing at Mania, but, instead he has Show in his natural habitat at WrestleMania 18 - eating at the WWE Restaurant in New York. Cut up Another Embarrassing Big Show WrestleMania Moment. Back in 2002, Show was positioned at WWE's failed restaurant. Back live, Miz tried to sneak attack Show, but Show cut him off and landed a big spear. Lawler suggested Miz will be waiting tables during WrestleMania this year. Show then KO Punched Miz for a decisive win.
WINNER: Big Show at 2:02.
Raw Tonight: Cena plans to publicly address the live audience tonight. How will Rock respond?
[Q7] Earlier Tonight: Rock was shown in Boston for Rock History Lesson #3. He was standing outside the Massachusetts Statehouse overlooking the Boston Common. Rock said this is where Americans fought for their independence and started a revolution to overthrow a tyranny. He said Rock Revolution will overthrow John Cena. He said Rock is back because he can entertain around the world, but there's only one place where he can fight: right here in WWE. Rock said now that he's taken Cena on a history lesson, he's going to make history on April 1 at WrestleMania. He vowed to beat Cena. But, that's April 1. Tonight is March 5. The Rock Revolution has begun and is going live to the TD Garden. He vowed to look Cena in the eyes tonight and tell the world what he sees. "Get ready, John," Rock whispered before shouting, "If you smell what The Rock is cooking!" Cole said Rock is on his way. They're in the same arena later tonight.
Raw Next Week: A graphic showed Michaels and Taker facing off. Next week, Taker will be live on Raw to respond to the HBK-Hunter exchange tonight.
In-ring: R-Truth came to the ring for the next match. They cut to an inset promo from Truth talking about Kane earlier in the night. Truth stopped short when he questioned who was behind the camera. Kane's pyro then shot off before his music played to bring out Kane for a random match against Truth. They cut to footage from Smackdown when Kane attacked Orton "for some reason," according to Cole. Cole called it Kane's resurrection.
5 -- KANE vs. R-TRUTH
Kane landed body shots early on, but Truth tried to fight back before taking a boot to the face. Kane landed more offense, but Truth ducked a clothesline and landed a boot to the gut. Truth went for his scissors kick finisher, but Kane avoided and nailed a chokeslam for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Kane at 1:26. So odd seeing Kane back on Raw after Cena dismantled him at Elimination Chamber, with no mention of those events.
Post-match: Randy Orton's music hit and Orton hit the ring to deliver an RKO to Kane, who was momentarily preoccupied with Truth. Orton then called for a mic and repeated Kane's words to him from Smackdown that it's good to be back. Cue up Orton's music. Cole noted Orton is "back to normal" being cold-blooded and seeking revenge.
Backstage: Cena was shown walking down the hallway. Lawler said Rock is on his way to the arena to confront Cena, who's scheduled to be on Raw next.
Smackdown plug: John Laurinaitis takes over Smackdown for one night only. Or, is it? Will Laurinaitis try to take over both shows?
In-ring: Back from break, John Cena's music played to bring out Cena back in his hometown. On-stage, Cena said it's the home of Larry Bird, Wade Boggs, and John Cena. Cena soaked up the crowd boos and some cheering before storming the ring. In the ring, Cena said he thought the crowd would be excited. Just a little bit of excitement. He noted they have people sitting behind the scoreboard, it's so packed, and he knows why. Because The Rock is finally back. Cena said it's the real Rock, the one he needs to face at WrestleMania. Cena said the History Lessons are everything The Rock needs to be. Pause for "Rocky, Rocky" chant.
Cena said if you sort through it all, though, Rock is really saying he's obsessed with breakfast cereal, he talks about his penis, and how many girls he's had sex with. Wait, is he fighting Rock or The Situation at WrestleMania? Cena said this guy is trying way too hard and is having a mid-life crisis. He noted in the first time in Rock's career last week, he was shook up. "I mean, damn, was he shook up," Cena said. Cena evaluated Rock's 20-minute promo and said only one man could have done it. Him - a prep-school wannabe thug who looks lame. Cena mocked his own attire before saying Rock is back all right with his U. of Miami swagger. He said Rock wants to meet him face-to-face now, but he thinks it's a bad idea because all of Rock's good stuff lately has been via satellite or pre-recorded.
Cena said he wants to know, though, if Rock is going to show up like he's wasting everyone's time or as the best Superstar in WWE history. Cena doesn't want to see Dwayne Johnson, but The Rock. He asked the crowd if they want to see the real Rock tonight. He then pointed to the entrance and shouted, "Bring on The Rock."
Cue up Rock's theme music to bring out Rock, who confidently marched to the ring back live in Boston. Cena took a deep breath as Rock entered the ring and began circling Cena. They circled each other in the ring as the crowd chanted, "Rocky, Rocky." Good energy in the crowd. Rock took a mic and announced he's come back to Boston, with Cena playing along in the background. Rock then turned to Cena, who was leaning against the top rope waiting for a good word. Rock looked Cena in the eyes and said he sees fear. "Fear that I'm taking everything away," Rock said. A brief "Cena, Cena" chant broke out that was quickly drowned out by boos. Rock continued that Cena is fearful that everything he's worked hard at for ten years will all go away. Rock hears fear in his words. Rock asked Cena if he really thinks he shook his confidence. "Look at me," Rock said. Pause for "Boots to asses" chant. Rock put his hand up toward Cena and said Rock has never, ever been more confident than anything in his life. A random chant came up that Cena clarified as "Tooth Fairy."
[Q9 -- over-run] Rock shot an eyebrow before getting back in the moment with Cena. Rock told Cena he can strip away WrestleMania, Hollywood, catchphrases, trending worldwide, and everything else, and he's a man who will rip Cena's throat out. Rock got within inches of Cena. He said at Cena's core is a little boy who will go down in history always as The Rock's bitch. Rock backed away and his music played. Cena mockingly took out a pen started writing on his wrist. Rock marched to the back, disappeared to the back, and Cena was left alone in the ring.
Cena looked at his wrist to make sure he had Rock's measurements written down correctly. He said Rock vowed to rip out his throat and that will be what Rock has to do. Cena said Rock has other options if he loses, but this is everything for him. Cena claimed Rock is half-right on a bunch of things before declaring he's going to make history at WrestleMania by whipping Rock's ass. Cena's music played, then he jumped into the crowd to celebrate with fans and friends. Cena took a swig of beer before splashing the cameraman. Cena then hopped back into the ring and celebrated as WWE cameras picked up a shot of the WM28 logo in the arena. Cena did a victory lap, starting with his dad, before planting a kiss on his wife. Cole thanked the audience for joining them before Raw signed off five minutes past the top of the hour with Cena still celebrating after a 16-minute final segment.
Raw next week from Cleveland: WWE plugged a Rock Concert and John Cena Rap theme.
FINAL THOUGHTS: One of those pre-PPV maintenance shows that didn't seem to accomplish much (other than announcing HBK as special ref for Taker-Hunter) and was merely about reinforcement.
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