The SmarK RAW Rant for 08.22.11
– RIP Jack Layton: http://goo.gl/RMnQ3.
– Live from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, which was my home for many years.
– Don’t forget to check out my review of the RAW house show from Saturday night:Â http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2011/08/21/the-smark-rant-for-wwe-raw-house-show-saskatoon-saskatchewan-08-20-11/
– Your hosts are Michael Cole, Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler.
Alberto Del Rio joins us for the opening interview, but John Cena doesn’t even let him tell us his NAME before he interrupts.Â Apparently “good manners” don’t fit into “Hustle, Loyalty and Respect.”Â Alberto is a great man, who wears the belt around his waist, therefore making him the best champion in many years.Â Cena accuses ADR of RENTING his cars, and not being as good as CM Punk.Â He might have a point there.Â About Punk, not the cars.Â Clearly he would never stoop to renting someone else’s car.Â So this brings out Punk, who points out that he already beat Cena twice, so therefore he deserves the title shot.Â Cena and Punk openly treating Del Rio like an annoyance in their feud is kind of funny.Â Punk reiterates that he has no problem with Del Rio personally, but feels that forces are conspiring against him (Jack Tunney might even be involved!) and Del Rio is being used as someone’s tool.Â So both Punk and Cena want to cash in their rematch clause TONIGHT.Â Del Rio thinks they should stop crying like little girls, but now COOHHH interrupts.Â No title match tonight, but it’s Punk v Cena tonight to see who will get the title shot at Night of Champions.
Alberto Del Rio v. John Morrison
JoMo attacks to start and slugs Del Rio down for two, but walks into a necksnap.Â ADR with a superkick and high kick to put Morrison down, then sends him into the corner and starts working on the arm.Â Morrison escapes into a headlock, but Del Rio hits him with a leg kick and tries a german suplex.Â Morrison blocks it and sends ADR out, but mises a quebrada and gets sent into the railing.Â We take a break and return with ADR in control and working on the neck.Â Morrison kicks his way out, but ADR puts him down with a backbreaker for two.Â Front powerslam gets two and it’s back to the chinlock.Â Morrison fights out again and backdrops Del Rio to the floor, which allows Morrison to make the comeback.Â Russian legsweep gets two.Â Del Rio with a german suplex for two.Â He tries the armbar, but Morrison reverses to a rollup for two.Â Tornado DDT gets two.Â Shining Wizard is blocked and Del Rio tries to powerbomb him from there, but Morrison reverses into a rana for two.Â Great near fall there.Â They slug it out and Morrison hits the flash kick into Starship Pain, but Del Rio moves.Â Morrison into the ringpost, and the armbar finishes at 11:00.Â Hell of a opening match.Â ***3/4
Did you know that last week more people apparently watched Smackdown than any other show on cable TV?Â Uh, I’d like to see the magic ratings numbers that gave them THAT result.Â I’m pretty sure Storage Wars blows away everything else on cable right now by quite a lot.
Eve Torres v. Nikki Bella
Bella tosses Eve to start and goes to a chinlock, but Eve suplexes out of it and bootyshakes into a standing moonsault for two.Â She goes up, but the other twin distracts her and allows Nikki to bring her down.Â Eve finishes with a neckbreaker despite the setback at 2:33.Â *Â The DIVAS OF DOOM continue their taunting after the match.
Meanwhile, Kevin Nash is here.
Jack Swagger v. Alex Riley
Swagger has now joined the Vickie Family.Â Who in the world would have watched last week’s atrocity and thought we needed a REMATCH?Â Swagger powers Riley into a slam, but takes a spinebuster.Â Ziggler comes out to continue his domestic dispute with Vickie, which distracts Swagger and allows Riley to roll him up for the cheap pin at 2:01.Â I hate that finish so much.Â We’ve seen it literally a hundred times in the past few years and it does nothing but make the winner look like a fluke.Â Especially when it’s a 2 minute TV match where neither guy gets any significant offense.Â Nothing to the match.Â 1/2*
COOHHH joins us again, this time looking for answers from Kevin Nash.Â He reiterates that he did not send the text to Nash and there’s no conspiracy.Â Nash was going to apologize to Punk, but then changed his mind because of Punk’s trash talk last week.Â COOHHH tries to reason with him, pointing out that Nash doesn’t work for WWE, so he should call Punk over to the Tim Hortons across the street and take care of it there.Â I would pay good money to see that.Â So this brings out Punk, who lays out the suspects for the text message:Â Big Lazy with the giant tube of Just For Men, COOHHH with his “trusty sledgehammer” (seriously, someone owes me royalties for this stuff), or maybe Stephanie.Â Punk just wants to settle it in the ring with Nash, but COOHHH steps in.Â Punk wonders if maybe his “bean-headed wife” is actually calling the shots.Â Uh oh, don’t question COOHHH’s manliness, no good can come of that.Â Sadly, he pushes it by inferring that the cell phone was in Stephanie’s purse along with his balls, and Nash lays him out as a result.
Meanwhile, Nash and COOHHH continue squabbling about what went down.
WWE Tag titles:Â David Otunga & Michael McGillicutty v. Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne
Lawler continues harping on how the champions are boring and worthless.Â They really know how to get people over.Â Mr. Perfect Jr. gets caught in the babyface corner and double-teamed, but he fights back and slugs Kofi down in the corner.Â Kofi springboards out with a bodypress for two, but he gets saved by Otunga lest he suffer a Boomdrop.Â Kofi is dumb enough to follow them out, and he gets beat up on the floor for his troubles.Â Back in, Otunga with a clothesline for two.Â Slam gets two.Â Atomic drop into a McGillicutty dropkick gets two.Â Bourne gets the tag and cleans house on Otunga with kicks for two, and Kofi hits the wacky kick on Otunga from the apron.Â Shooting Star Press finishes at 5:00 to thankfully end the reign of the Nexus.Â Now hopefully they don’t split them up in two weeks.Â This was pretty much a carbon copy of last week’s non-title match, but at least the announcers treat it like a huge deal.Â **
Meanwhile, Executive VP of Future Endeavors Johnny Ace informs COOHHH that Kevin Nash was just in a car accident and is in the hospital.Â So COOHHH is out of the building just in time for the main event to start.Â Has anyone actually seen John Laurinatis and Super Dave Osborne in the same place?Â Just wondering.
Santino Marella comes out for a match, but Miz and R-Truth beat the crap out of him.Â I sense new challengers to the tag titles.Â Truth lays out the conspiracy:Â COOHHH sits around the conspiracy table with John Cena, Kevin Nash, CM Punk and Stephanie CONSPIRING against him.Â Both Miz and Truth feel that they’re being unfairly excluded from the main event now, and will be taking any opportunities that present themselves.Â Look out spiders, you’re getting squashed!Â I like this pairing, actually.Â Neither guy is doing anything, throw them together as a team.Â That’s how it used to work.
John Cena v. CM Punk
This is pretty much neutral territory so the crowd reaction should be interesting.Â So then Cena throws the shirt into the crowd,Â and the crowd throws it back, so I guess there’s your answer.Â They trade headlocks to start and it’s a stalemate.Â Punk goes backÂ to the headlock and the crowd chants for the Oilers.Â Geez, cheer for Cena, at least he wins sometimes.Â Cena puts Punk down and tries to inform him that he is unable to see Cena, but Punk proves him wrong with a cradle for two.Â Running knee in the corner and Punk goes up, but Cena knocks him down and we take a break. Back with Cena getting a backdrop suplex, but Punk comes off the top with a flying clothesline for two.Â He goes for the GTS early, but Cena reverses out and into a crossface.Â Punk escapes and hits the GTS out of nowhere, but only gets two.Â He goes up for the Macho Elbow, but Cena moves.Â Cena to the top now with the guillotine legdrop for two.Â He tries the FU, but Punk elbows out and puts him down with a high knee for two.Â Cena recovers with the FU for two, however.Â These two have some crazy good timing and chemistry together.Â They fight to the top and Cena goes down, but Punk’s high crossbody is caught by Cena, then reversed into a cradle by Punk for two.Â Punk levels him with a high kick and it’s time for the finish, but now Kevin Nash interrupts.Â FU and we’re done at 13:00.Â ****Â Another cheap finish, but I guess you can’t expect an all-time classic for a TV main event.Â Â Del Rio runs in for the beatdown on Cena, but Johnny Ace calls him off, mostly unsuccessfully.Â Â Well at least they have an issue now going into the PPV.
Can’t argue with two great matches on the same show.Â Plus I continue to be intrigued by where they’re going with the Cell Phone Mystery.Â The rest was merely filler and little attempt was made to present it as anything but, although that shouldn’t be a huge surprise to anyone watching.