It is time for WWE RAW! Tonight is the night for all you High Definition folks. People like me, however, probably won’t see any difference. Enough with the small talk, letâ€™s get on with the show.
A tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr. opens up our broadcast tonight. After that, we get a recap of last weekâ€™s main event and what happened afterwards.
The newly improved RAW video plays and Iâ€™m already seeing a difference. Hot having widescreen sucks. The set is awesome as we are in High Definition! Tonight, Jeff Hardy and Randy Orton will be forced to put their differences aside for one night and shake hands.
He is a sexy boy and every womanâ€™s dreamâ€¦Shawn Michaels! Our opening match is main-event worthy, so letâ€™s get to it! Mr. Kennedy
Shawn Michaels v. Mr. Kennedy
Match Stipulation: Standard Match
The bell rings as both men tie up in the center. Kennedy nails an armdrag, beating Michaels to the punch. Michaels takes Kennedy down and applies a headlock. Kennedy gets out of it and he works on the arm. Michaels gets out and he telegraphs the leapfrog, taking Kennedy down with a leg sweep. Michaels with a cover and that gets two. Kennedy tries for an unique move, but Michaels drops south, getting a two count. Kennedy doesnâ€™t learn a second time and Michaels telegraphs again. Kennedy takes Michaels down and he covers for two! Kennedy has a modified chinlock on Michaels, but he breaks it off and he nails a modified neckbreaker/backbreaker combo. Kennedy torques the back of Shawn Michaels as Michaels is fighting! He clocks Kennedyâ€™s head in a couple times, but Kennedy nails a couple more backbreakers. Kennedy nails some clubbing blows and he pulls the hair!
After the near fall, Kennedy continues the assault on Michaels. Eye poke connects, but that wakes Michaels up. Michaels evades the vertical suplex and he nails a swinging neckbreaker! Both men are down as the referee counts. They get back up and they trade blows until Michaels nails the forearm, inverted atomic drop, scoop slam, and he goes up top. He drops the elbow and he tunes up the bandâ€¦in HD! Sweet Chin Music misses, as Kennedy drops outside. Michaels nails a plancha and we take a commercial,
We are back as Michaels is in trouble. During the break, Kennedy catapulted Michaels into the ring post. Kennedy nails the running knee lift to Michaelâ€™s headâ€¦FOR TWO! Michaels nails the knifeedge chops, but Kennedy whips Michaels to the turnbuckle, which he oversells, but Michaels explodes and he turns Kennedy into a pancake! Kennedy uses his his head to gain the advantage. Mic Check time is countered, but Michaels gets overpowered to the turnbuckle. Kennedy climbs the turnbuckle and he looks for a Superplex. Michaels battles out of it and he nails the elbow, but Kennedyâ€™s knees shot up! Kennedy nails the Green Bay Plungeâ€¦FOR TWO! Kennedy is busted open by his eye, but he nearly evades the Sweet Chin Music. Michaels looks for the reverse Figure Four, but Kennedy countered intoâ€¦a Michaels SWEET CHIN MUSICâ€¦game, set, match.
Winner: Shawn Michaels
Backstage, Randy Ortonâ€™s neck is still hurting him. He complains about how Jeff Hardy tried to end his career last week and the fact that Vince McMahon wants Randy to shake Jeff Hardyâ€™s hand. Vince understands that he is hurting and Randy says that he wonâ€™t shake his hand. Vince reminds us of the times that he had to shake hands with people that he didnâ€™t like. Vince says that if Randy shakes Jeffâ€™s hand, that it would be a competitive edge. Who thought that Vince McMahon was the Voice of Reason?
We are back as â€œThe Glamazonâ€ Beth Phoenix graces us with her presence. J.R. goes fruity for Skittles. Out comes Mickie James, who looks as hot as usual.
Beth Phoenix v. Mickie James
Match Stipulation: Non-Title Womenâ€™s Match
Beth has an arm wrench, but Mickie gets out of it for a moment, but Beth uses her power to her adventage, nailing her knees to Mickieâ€™s chest for two. Mickie gets a Lou Thez Press and she looks to be in control. She tries to punch her way to the top, but Beth sends her on the apron, before knocking her off. Beth rams Mickie against the side of the ring, but she gets two for it. She applies a rear naked choke, but Mickie gets out of it. Mickie rolls through a suplex and rolls Beth up for two. Flying forearm takes Beth down, but Beth is too powerfulâ€¦MICKIE-CURANA CONNECTS! Mickie gets another near fall on Beth. Mickie tries for the screaming DDT, but Beth hangs her up on the top rope. The Fishermanâ€™s Suplex ends this matchâ€¦
Winner: Beth Phoenix
Todd Grisham has Triple H up for our interview segment. If Triple H wins his match tonight, he will be in the Royal Rumble this Sunday. Triple H plugs HD and he makes fun of Vinceâ€™s attempts to cover up the HD effects on his body. Triple H says that he was one of seven men who won the Rumble and went on to win the title at Wrestlemania. Triple H guara-damn-tees that he will be in the Rumble this Sunday.
We are back and we go back two weeks to JBL dragging Chris Jericho like a bull tied up. Tonight, Chris Jericho is back.
Backstage we go and we get feedback from Brian Kendrick and Cody Rhodes with their dreams about winning the Rumble. Hardcore Holly comes in and he gets confused with Myspace. He warns that if anyone gets in HisSpace, he will take them out. Cody has Hardcoreâ€™s back tonight against Carlito.
We get a video of Randy Orton and his upset victory over Hardcore Holly in his debut match. More clips of Orton in almost every way possible is shown. The man is about destiny. Later tonight, Hardy and Orton will shake handsâ€¦yeah right.
Backstage once again, Finlay and Hornswoggle gear up for tag team actionâ€¦NEXT!
WWE Slam of the Week: Hornswoggle participates in a Midget Rumble Match. Yeahâ€¦that suckedâ€¦whatever grade I gave it last week, feel free to trash it.
Finlay & Hornswoggle is here to take on the brand shifting Highlanders. They must be the jobbers to the stars on all brands.
Finlay & Hornswoggle v. The Highlanders
Match Stipulation: Tag Team Match
Finlay goes to the pub with Rory until Robbie double teams Finlay. Hornswoggle gets brought into the ring, but he bites Roryâ€™s fingers. Robbie gets his hand stomped on and Rory gets taken down. Tag to Hornswoggleâ€¦Tadpole Splashâ€¦yeah. The Highlanders would do much better in TNA.
Winners: Finlay & Hornswoggle
Post match, Hornswoggle shoves Robbie over the top with Finlayâ€™s help. Yeahâ€¦whatever. Chris Jericho walks as itâ€™s break time.
Tomorrow Night: Chavo Guerrero v. CM Punk IV â€“ This time itâ€™s for the ECW Title!
We recap the return of JBL and his ongoing feud with Chris Jericho. Whoâ€™s your daddy? JBL is your daddy!
5â€¦4â€¦3â€¦2â€¦1â€¦SAVE US Y2J!
Chris Jericho is dressed in black, which means that he is pissed off! He has the microphone and he begins to speak. He could had came out and ranted and raved about wanting to face JBL tonight, but it happens that JBL isnâ€™t in the building tonight. Jericho calls JBL a coward for the things that he said last week. Jerichoâ€™s four year old son asks him if he was a coward. Jericho is in a serious tone tonight. He notes that JBL made a huge mistake by not finishing the job. He is still here, however. He isnâ€™t interested in having a spectacle this Sunday at the Rumble. He is interested in a fightâ€¦and that is that.
The commentary team runs down the card for the Royal Rumble.
Backstage, Jeff Hardy listens to a lecture from Vince McMahon. He doesnâ€™t want anyone risking their lives. He does the same thing to Jeff Hardy as he did earlier to Randy Orton. Jeff says that Vince shouldnâ€™t have to worry about anything, that he will give everyone something to talk about.
Out the chute comes Brian Kendrick. His match is to qualify for the Royal Rumble. William Regal pops up on the SUPERTRON and he tells Kendrick that in order for him to qualify, he has to beat a man that has already qualifiedâ€¦UMAGA!
Brian Kendrick v. Umaga
Royal Rumble Qualifying Match
Kendrick runs into a clothesline. Umaga takes and he nails some nasty shots. Kendrick moves out of a corner charge and Umaga eats turnbuckle. The offense lasts a few seconds as Umaga hangs him up in the Tree of Woe. The headbutt hits the low turnbuckle! Kendrick nails some vicious kicks, but Umaga no-sells them all and he pancakes him with the Samoan Drop! Mid-air Samoan Spike finishes this squashâ€¦
Backstage, Mickie James is in tears and Maria tries to console her. Ashley enters the shot and Mickie James leaves. Ashley tries to drop the Playboy line, but Santino is here to stop her cold. Anyone up for this recycled storyline of the jealous boyfriend and playboy diva? Itâ€™s Maria, so Iâ€™ll let that slide.
We get a sneak peek of Vince McMahon on Celebrity Apprentice. Backstage, Triple H is preparing for his match, while Jerry â€œThe Kingâ€ Lawler plays stupid by confusing HD with 3-D. We get a video of â€œThe Legend Thrillerâ€ Jeff Hardy.
Tomorrow Night on ECW: ECW Championship Match
Carlito makes his way to the ring, flanked by Santino Marella & Maria. We are reminded of the ridiculous â€œTrading Placesâ€ Match that happened two weeks ago. Hardcore Holly comes out with Cody Rhodes.
Hardcore Holly v. Carlito
Match Stipulation: Standard Match w/Manager
The bell rings and both men attempt arm drags, but Holly takes Carlito down to the mat. Holly runs into a pair of boots as Carlito gets a moment of momentum. Out of the corner, Carlito sends Holly to the ropes and he takes him back down. Carlito locks in a read naked choke as Holly tries to fight out of it. He is successful and Holly nails some stiff shots. Snap Suplex connects for two, but Carlito hangs Holly up on the ropes. Carlito locks on a double arm wrench, but Holly gets out of it. Carlito goes to the ropes and he gets elevated up and over. Holly nails his patented kick to the stomach. Alabamaslam attempt is interrupted by Santino Marella. The Backcracker connects for three!
Triple H walksâ€¦
We take a trip back to 2002, when Triple H returns from his first quad injury to throw Kurt Angle (with hair!) out of the ring to win!
Itâ€™s time to play the Gameâ€¦.in HD. He awaits his opponent, but Mr. Regal makes his presence on the stage. He states that Triple H does not have one person to face. It is an over-top-rope Gauntlet Match.
Triple H v. Snitsky
Royal Rumble 2nd Chance Qualifying Match â€“ Over-the-Top Rope Gauntlet Match
Behind door #1, is HDâ€™s worst nightmare, Snitsky! Triple H takes it to Snitsky, nailing the high knee. He goes to throw Snitsky over, but Snitsky blocks. Sidewalk Slam connects as Triple H is almost tossed over the top rope. Snitsky misses the big boot and Snitsky is out!
Triple H v. Mark Henry
Mark Henry gets inside the ring and Triple H beats some sense in him. The Knee Smash connects, but Triple H is knocked silly. Triple H is about to be eliminated, but he survives. Mark Henry takes and he nails a backbreaker on Triple H. He tosses Triple H, but he stays inside. Triple H is sent to the turnbuckle, but moves out of the way. Triple H PICKS UP MARK HENRYâ€¦but heâ€™s too heavy and he splashes him. Running turnbuckle splash connects and Mark Henry eliminates himself. The third man almost tries to come out, but Regal takes matters in his own hands.
Triple H v. William Regal
Regal beats some big sense in Triple H and he ALMOST eliminates him! Triple H nails the Spinebuster as Regal is in trouble. William Regal is tossed!
Winner: Triple H
Grade: No Grade
Backstage, Hardy and Orton walks out to the ring for the handshake of DOOM!
A recap of last weekâ€™s events play once again.
NO CHANCE IN HELL!
Vince McMahon powerwalks his way in HD! He is amazed at the SUPERTRON, before he heads inside the ring! He talks about the Royal Rumble before introducing the WWE Champion, Randy Orton. Orton takes his time getting inside the ring. Vince introduces Jeff Hardy to the fans, adding to the touch that if he wins Sunday, he will be the third superstar to hold both the WWE and Intercontinental Titles at the same time. Both men stand apart in the ring as Vince McMahon says that this match needs no additional hype. He adds in two possible factors and he puts both men over. He invites both men to step forward to shake hands. But first, Randy has some last minute comments. He says that since Hardy was named his opponent at the Rumble, he was relieved. He admits that he underestimated him, but he wonâ€™t win the title on Sunday. He has won Randy Ortonâ€™s respect, however. He hands the microphone to Jeff Hardy. Jeff doesnâ€™t care about earning his respect. He hit the Swanton from thirty feet in the air to HURT him, not IMPRESS him. He did it just to prove that he will do whatever it takes to win the championship. There are a lot of people that he respects that isnâ€™t named Randy Orton. He shakes hands with the ringside crew and some of the fans. He gets back in the ring and he stares at Randy Orton. Randy extends his hand and Jeff does nothing. Randy Orton drops the belt he extends his hand more forcibly. TWIST OF FATE by Jeff Hardy and Randy Orton is staring at the lights!
The Inside Pulse
The RAW Report Card
Shawn Michaels d. Mr. Kennedy – A
Beth Phoenix d. Mickie James – C
Finlay & Hornswoggle d. The Highlanders – D-
Umaga d. Brian Kendrick – F
Carlito d. Hardcore Holly – B-
Triple H d. Snitsky, Mark Henry, & William Regal – No Grade
The Final Grade for WWE Raw 1/21/2008: C+