Raw Recap, 23rd June 2014

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June 26, 2014 by Joey Keogh

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It’s the go-home show before Money In The Bank and where better to have it than Washington, DC, where Obama lives and all of those silly, meaningless wars are launched. As we are here, there are lots of jokes tonight about how AWESOME it is to be an American – at least, they seem to be jokes – so later on, both Lana and Zeb Colter will make points about the US of A in their own, very unique ways. But first, Steph is here to admire the ladders that have been set up all along the entrance ramp, and to discuss Vickie’s “gross negligence” last week in letting Roman Reigns not only take part in the MITB qualifying match but win it, too! The crowd goes nuts upon mention of his name, but Steph isn’t here to discuss him, rather she wants to admonish Vickie, who has no entrance music, bless her, for her insolence.

usosThe boss lady – who really doesn’t need an optical illusion dress with those boobies – explains that there’ll be more coattail-riding for Vickie, and that because the WWE couldn’t turn her into a Diva, and she sucks as a GM, she will now have to either quit or fight Steph later tonight. Although she acts as though she’s going to cry and run away, Vickie actually gets up in Steph’s face and screams that she knows how to “cheat, lie and steal” and that the one name with more respect than Mc Mahon is Guerrero, which she chooses to over-pronounce like Alberto Del Rio saying “Mehico” or “onion”. She flounces off, leaving Steph to look impressed/aroused and Michael Cole to recap, while revealing his flashy suit, which is more interesting than he will ever be.

Later, there will be a 4-on-3 handicap match, because it’s assumed none of us are watching Smackdown, along with an Intercontinental Championship match pitching Dolph Ziggler against Bad News Barrett.

skully skullJimmy Uso -v- Luke Harper
Before any of that, though, for the first time ever, The Usos aren’t involved in a tag team match, they’re competing separately! But don’t despair, there will be a tag team championship match at MITB so really this is just warm-up for that. First, Jimmy – apparently, according to Cole, who is often wrong – is facing up against Harper. Harper emerges with his brother Erick Rowan to some weird, swampy hillbilly music, which King reckons has something to do with The Phantom Of The Opera primarily because it includes organs. It sucks but it fits. Harper catches Jimmy with a brutal dropkick right off the bat, but his opponent pays him back a few minutes later. Jey Uso and Rowan tussle outside the ring. The match ends with a clothesline from Harper, after about two minutes.
Winner: Luke Harper (the music really helped get him in the zone)

skully skullJey Uso -v- Erick Rowan
Just when it seemed like Raw was off to a shit start before it’d even really begun, the first match bleeds into the second as Jey calls the departing, “stinky ass” Wyatts back for another round. During this whole thing, they try to make “Uso crazy” happen. Again. Dear WWE, please stop trying to make this happen, it is not going to happen. Rowan delivers a ridiculous amount of headbutts during this bout, but it’s Jey’s match and he wins it with a Splash from the top rope as Jimmy simultaneously clears the steps to tackle Harper on the outside. The action continues after the bell has rung, with Harper slapping Rowan because he is just so ker-azy. The two hold up the tag team championship belts, as though the audience is going to turn on them or something if they win on Sunday.
Winner: Jey Uso (one win each, it’s only fair)

tumblr_n7niqyqJj51slkad2o1_500The two Wyatts stand to attention as their daddy Bray Wyatt appears onscreen to tell them how proud he is of them, as though he’s just been to a parent-teacher conference and they were pronounced “stinky but clever”. He then refers to a ladder, but it’s unclear whether he’s opining about a metaphorical one or a literal one. Who cares, because a grumpy photo of Daniel Bryan is being used to sell the fact he’ll be on the MITB Kickoff show, whatever that means! A guy seated directly behind the commentators strokes his impressive beard as Cole explains, er, nothing, but it looks far too good to be real, so hopefully it is. Elsewhere, Lana and Alexander Rusev are on a tour of Washington that mainly involves standing on the side of the road, and they are unimpressed with white buildings that look nothing like the candy kingdom that is the Kremlin. Rusev is rocking some bad-ass shades throughout this vignette, and he only removes them towards the end, like Horatio, so we know he means business.

skully skullDivas Match: Naomi -v- Alicia Fox
Paige
enters first, but she’s only on commentary, so supposedly this is a Total Divas match as opposed to a Divas match. Why go to the trouble of awarding her the title if she isn’t going to defend it? Why put her on commentary at all? Does she get paid by the minute or something? Alicia reckons we’re all losers, but that’s rich coming from someone using a hand gesture that was stale about ten years ago. Cole describes her as “crazy as a loon”, which is redundant, while King busies himself checking out the butt of anyone in his vicinity. Cameron is also doing commentary, but seems to think she’s working on a phone sex chatline instead. She and Paige trade barbs throughout, but Cameron‘s don’t land because she, for some reason, cannot stop using the word “actually”. Cole makes fun of her for having no friends on that show that she’s on. There’s a decent backbreaker from one of the ladies in the ring but the other one – Naomi, apparently – wins it with what is, by all means, a two-count. Paige jumps up to shake her hand afterwards because we’re supposed to be excited for their title match at MITB, for some reason.
Winner: Naomi (which one is she again?)

tumblr_n7ohwfu3IX1r35q8fo1_500Backstage, Sheamus is wrapping his wrists while Roman Reigns stands next to him, pretending he can’t hear him blathering on about the goddamn Blarney Stone or whatever it is he’s on about. Sheamo totally thinks they’re mates but Reigns is all “I could kill you with my thumb” It doesn’t matter, though, because Sheamo is happy no matter what. He’s like Bo Dallas, only Irish!

skully skullTitus O’Neill -v- Bo Dallas
Speaking of Bo Dallas, here he is now, in all of his sweaty, perma-tanned, perma-grinned glory. He’s rocking a bit of a shiner, but he’s still happy to be involved and even takes a moment before the match begins to let Titus – who has music, apparently – know that he appreciates him proving on Smackdown that winning isn’t everything. The crowd are really into it, even more so when Titus unleashes his fury and delivers two backbreakers in a row on him. JBL refers to Bo’s winning streak as “the greatest streak in sports entertainment” which is amazing, especially because he wins again tonight. Afterwards, he kneels down to give a pep talk to his opponent, and when Titus slaps the mic out of his hands, Bo quickly recovers it and says “Silly me, Mr. Butterfingers!” which some dude thinks is HILARIOUS.
Winner: Bo Dallas (soon Heyman will turn up and pontifcate about beating this streak)

Following the match, Triple H enters, pausing to admire the ladders as he does so, and wonders aloud how he is still considered the bad guy in Washington, DC of all places. This Sunday, he explains, there will be two ladder matches at MITB, and if you were wondering who’s going to join new lapdog Seth Rollins in the bout, well, wonder no more because Trips is here to EXCLUSIVELY reveal that it’ll be; Kofi Kingston, Jack Swagger, Rob Van Dam, Bad News Barrett (he loves doing that accent, even though “roight” is Irish, not British) and that dude we all think he doesn’t care about, Dolph Ziggler – this is a nice little touch, and the crowd eat it up, but it doesn’t really fix rollinsrvdanything yet. Trips then tries to make a joke about RVD winning but can’t keep a straight face. Rollins emerges in new gear that appears to have been dreamed up by the collective fantasies of everyone currently writing Tumblr fanfic about him – they’re tights, but they seem to be made out of latex, and although his shirt looks a bit like the Welsh flag, it doesn’t stay on for long. He looks a bit like he’s en route to an S&M party, which is cool. The crowd boo the shit out of him – especially when the replay of his betrayal is played yet again, and seriously it’s never going to get old – but he thinks they should be applauding him, because he made The Shield. One dude is really booing the hell out of him, the longest “Booooooooooooooooooo” in the history of the world, in fact he might actually be having a stroke. RVD turns up with his weirdly pink tongue to slur things at Rollins, who reckons he’s “so 2005” – that’s rich, coming from someone who looks like he really wants to be in New Found Glory. It’s sad, because RVD can talk better than this, but when he’s had a bit too much, all he can offer is a load of “Totally”s and “Duuuude”s. Trips does that smug chuckle of his in the background, before Rollins and RVD decide it’s time to fight.

skully skullRob Van Dam -v- Seth Rollins
Funnily enough, RVD is a lot more awake in the ring than he is on the mic tonight, delivering a pretty cool-looking monkey flip pretty much right away before Rollins counters with three Suplexes in a row. His offence is on-point throughout, but man his legs/balls must be on fire – hopefully he doesn’t need the toilet after, because if those pants come down, they won’t be going back on and nobody wants to wander around backstage in his undies, apart from maybe Orton. There are some great clotheslines during this match, too, but it’s RVD’s still-awesome Rolling Thunder that hits hardest. He subsequently tries for the 5 Star Frog Splash but Rollins rolls away, before administering a brutal curbstomper, which is fast becoming his signature move, in spite of its relative simplicity. He goes for the pin but Dean Ambrose appears out of nowhere and lays into him, giving RVD the perfect opportunity to amble away and get back to his backstage brownie-eating and laughing at hotel numbers. One chick in the crowd is losing her shit over Ambrose, possibly because he looks like the sexy brother of the Wyatts, who in this case would be the real black sheep of the family due to lack of beard, but he is soon dragged away by security. He pretends to leave, then quickly turns back, and runs over the announce table to attack Rollins, who flees in terror. Ambrose then way overdoes the crazy eyes while delivering a monologue about how he should be a part of the MITB ladder match because otherwise he’s going to wreak havoc and win it anyway somehow! Surely revealing his plans live on Raw will stop him in his tracks, or is that not how Trips operates?
Winner: DQ (but we won, because Rollins wore those tights)

ambroseBackstage, Vickie is in her ring gear, warming up and looking like someone’s mother, because, well, she is. Meanwhile, Rollins is demanding that Trips put Ambrose in the match on Sunday because otherwise he won’t be able to sleep in the bunk above him anymore. He’s so angry, he’s removed one of his gloves in protest. “I got this” he tells his boss, like a teenager looking for approval from his father. Trips giggles, but Ambrose is in.

skully skullIntercontinental Championship Match: Dolph Ziggler -v- Bad News Barrett
Happily, this is one of the lengthiest matches of the night, which is just what these two deserve. That one chick from before also loves Barrett, just for context. His bad news refers to their “racist, constantly losing” NFL team, because sports? There’s a major pop for Ziggler as he enters, and he opens the match in spectacular style with a dropkick to Barrett’s jaw. These two work really well together, especially when they just spar and feed off their combined energy. There are so many near falls this match, it almost makes up for the fact that it’s a championship bout that was deemed not good enough for the PPV. JBL references England’s loss in the World Cup, once again hinting that we should we watching real sport too, which isn’t going to happen any time soon because those men aren’t nearly as attractive or oiled up. A Zig Zag leaves both men a bit wrecked, but a whopping ten Elbow Drops in a row follows with Barrett somehow still managing to push through. He later delivers an elbow from the apron, before the Wasteland has the crowd losing their shit. He goes for the Bullhammer to finish him off, but Ziggler avoids it, sending Barrett crashing into the turnbuckle before administering the Fame Asser. Barrett manages to find some more energy – possibly while thinking of England – and delivers the Bullhammer in midair as Ziggler launches towards him once more, before pinning him to win and retain the title.
Winner: Bad News Barrett (when matches are this good, it doesn’t even matter that the belt didn’t change hands)

bullhammerBackstage, Renee is with Vickie, who puts weird emphasis on the word “insulted”. Apparently, this is her taking her dignity back, which makes sense in crazy land, supposedly. Orton turns up to make it all about him and his winning the title at the PPV, but at least MITB is being sold well because, let’s face it, if nobody cares about it, then we won’t either.

skully skullVickie Guerrero -v- Stephanie Mc Mahon
Vickie enters to Eddie’s music, which is a nice touch, but when Steph emerges she’s still in her dress from earlier so it’s immediately obvious that she has a devious plan hidden in her suffocating cleavage. There’s a massive “Yes” chant – the first of the night, surprisingly – as Steph reveals that they won’t be fighting in the ring, but in a paddling pool full of brown stuff that has a noticeable skin on it because it’s clearly been sitting out of shot for about ten hours. The Divas whose names none of us know turn up to push Vickie in, but of course she manages to land all of them first. Alicia is not happy, but she should be, because she gets the honour of knocking the last of the goo’s skin off and everyone knows that’s the best part. Surprisingly, the crowd tumblr_n7omb8barY1sbzhteo1_400cheer for Vickie, but just as she’s taking a second to celebrate, Steph pushes her in from behind before starting a “Yes” chant of her own. She then delivers the ol’ “You’re FIRED” line just like her daddy before tunelessly singing a song to celebrate her, eh, victory? Vickie grabs her hair and drags her in after her, leading JBL to demand Cole go help her out. There are more cheers for Vickie as she ascends the ramp, taking a moment to pause and dance a little to Eddie’s music – it’s a sweet moment, because although she’s just been humiliated on TV, at least we know she’s leaving to spend more time with her kids. Meanwhile, Steph is having terrible trouble getting out of the pool, even managing to drag a referee in with her. She tells us all that we’ll live to regret this as she tramples out of the arena, which just makes it funnier – though this doesn’t eclipse the projectile vomiting from last week.
Winner: Was this even a match, though?

Backstage, the man who is not Renee is with Goldust, who’s all “Who’s Cody? I only know STARDUST” Almost on cue, Stardust turns up to do a pretty decent David Bowie impression before blowing glitter out of his hand, leading his brother to remark that he’s “the normal one” now.

skully skullJack Swagger -v- Kofi Kingston
Fresh from the excitement of the news of his inclusion in the MITB match, Kofi has a match on Raw, y’all! But first, Swagger’s manager Zeb Colter has a few words to say about immigrants while holding up a sign which reads “The Best Defence Is A Fence” Apparently Kofi is a dirty foreigner too!? Who knew! A ridiculously athletic dude, he dominates from the get-go with a series of flips, bounces and dropkicks, before Swagger locks him in the Patriot Lock, causing him to tap out.
Winner: Jack Swagger (maybe next time, Kofi)

Renee is now with Alberto Del Rio, but before he can say too many things in his weirdly racist accent, Cesaro and Paul Heyman turn up because the latter heard the number “one” and, as we all know, that can only refer to him and his client Brock Lesnar beating the streak. When ADR questions Cesaro as to why he never speaks, he remarks that, although he’s fluent in ten million languages, “idiot” isn’t one of them. So no chat for you, ADR. Back in the ring, Abe Lincoln – otherwise known as the man who’s pissed off someone very high up in the WWE – is launching his posthumous career as a magician. Big E SDturns up to knock his hat off and pin him in seconds. E then gives a breathless speech about how the USA is not lame but Lana appears to correct him before Rusev catches him from behind with the Accolade – give them a proper match, damn it! Backstage again, Renee is with John Cena, who is serious tonight, thankfully, and wants to discuss having a “new” world heavyweight champion after Sunday. How he can say that with a straight face is beyond most of our comprehension, but Renee looks absolutely smitten with him – did she have posters of him on her wall, too!?

skully skullMain Event: 4-on-3 Handicap Match: John Cena & Sheamus & Alberto Del Rio & Randy Orton & Roman Reigns & Bray Wyatt & Cesaro
There’s a sign for Cena in the crowd which reads “Meep Moop” – maybe those of us older than fifteen aren’t supposed to get it? – and it’s distracting. Anyway, there’s a major pop for Cena as he enters, with that one chick losing her shit again. The match itself is a pretty typical back and forth, as these types of bouts often are, but there are some decent moves by Cesaro and Bray Wyatt, particularly when the two are up against Cena. ADR is demolished by Reigns, at one point, and he delivers an impressive Superman Punch to both Cesaro and Orton. Orton himself adminsters a pretty cool Suplex, before Sheamo taps in and does the ol’ 10 Beats on Cesaro. There’ a great neckbreaker by Orton, before Sheamo delivers the Brogue Kick to Cesaro to win it for them. The fighting continues after the bell has rung, with Reigns thrown into the barricade. ADR chokeslams Sheamo, before Trips enters, with Orton staring longingly from behind as he speaks, to reveal that THE DEMON KANE will also be participating in the MITB match, rendering his Main Event ladder match against Cena last week totally moot. Reigns Spears Kane in the ring because why the hell not.
Winners: The team with Cena on it

@ShewHedd

@ShewHedd

As much as it’s strange to admit it, the buildup to Money In The Bank has been really well-handled over the past few weeks, with everyone seemingly hungry for participation in the ladder matches, and lots of feuds rumbling along nicely, too. Hopefully Cena won’t win yet again, as it’d be nice to see Reigns get that massive push he deserves, but it’s probably the most likely result. Either way, it should be a fun PPV, if only because Ambrose/Rollins is going to be a crazy match-up no matter what.

If nothing else, at least we can look forward to that, along with the latex, of course.

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