Event: WWE Monday Night RAW
Airdate: Monday, September 24th, 2012 (USA Network)
Location: The Times Union Center in Albany, NY
Results by Ken Hill
“Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event…”
– No pyro as we go straight to the ring with Paul Heyman and the WWE Champion CM Punk. Heyman introduces himself and praises Punk. Heyman gives us the bad news that Raw will not be presented until “justice has been served” given the events of last week’s main event, where the ref made a three count despite Punk’s foot being on the rope well before the hand came down for three. Heyman asks for the ref, Brad Maddox, to come out and admit his faults, apologize to Punk, and tender his resignation immediately.
– Maddox walks like he’s walking the proverbial “green mile”, and is understandably hesitant to get in the ring. When he gets in, he apologizes, says it was his first main event, and he should’ve checked the ropes. Heyman agrees, but asks him to resign. Before Maddox can really object, Punk breaks his silence, lambasting Maddox and questioning his abilities of a man and a ref. Maddox explains he was brought in by AJ when Raw expanded to 3 hours. Heyman laughs at this, considering Maddox a scab, and hands him a WWE/NFL blindfold (ZING!), saying maybe he can sleep better at night with it. Punk calls AJ an idiot for hiring someone like Maddox and that brings out AJ herself.
– Heyman expects AJ to overturn the decision, but AJ says for him to assume would make “an ass out of you and me, but mostly you.” AJ questions Heyman, but Punk intercedes, telling her exactly why they have this animosity going on, and shows AJ’s proposal and Punk’s rejection from a little while ago. Punk mentions the hundreds of texts and their closed-door relationship, which gets AJ a little teared up. Ouch. Heyman then mockingly gets on one knee and proposes to AJ, ewww, and talks about all the power couples they could trump, and how Heyman can come up with the ideas, and AJ can take the credit. All AJ does, rightfully so, is slap the taste out of Heyman’s mouth and walks off.
– We get word of the exclusive interview with Jerry “The King” Lawler after his fateful heart attack two weeks ago.
Dolph Ziggler v. Kofi Kingston w/R-Truth
Ah, battle of the former mid-card titleholders, Take 1000. Vickie “teases” Little Jimmy, which brings both Ziggler and Kofi out, who accidentally knocks Truth’s soda into Vickie. The ref sends Vickie, Truth, and “Little Jimmy” to the back.
Kofi uppercuts Ziggler, who reverses a whip, but Kofi clotheslines him over, then hits a sweet somersault senton over the top rope onto Ziggler as we go to break…
Back from break, Kofi and Kingston trade punches. Kingston reverses a whip, but misses the splash, and Dolph hits his reverse Exploder suplex for a two count. Ziggler locks in a reverse chinlock. Kingston fights out, but Ziggler turns his momentum into a neckbreaker for two. Ziggler preens to the crowd, as Kofi mounts a comeback, only to get DRILLED with a standing dropkick for a close two. Ziggler misses a corner splash, giving Kofi time to regroup, as the two trade punches again, with Kofi gaining the upper hand. He takes Ziggler down, then nails a spinning Boom Drop. Kofi goes for TIP, Dolph counters into a suplex, Kofi lands on his feet, SOS attempt is countered, but Kofi nails a slingshot kick and cross body for two. Another springboard maneuver gets Kofi another two count. SOS gets Kofi a CLOSE two count, Kofi catches Ziggler on another kick attempt and catapults Ziggler into the corner, but Dolph catches himself. He dives for Kofi, who ducks and nails another cross body for another near fall. Kofi tries his corner split dive, but Dolph ducks, Kofi crashes and burns, and Ziggler nails the Zig Zag for the decisive three. Great match, expected with the chemistry these two have with each other.
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
– Back LIVE in Albany, NY. We recap the “bonding moment” on Smackdown with the tag champs Kane & Daniel Bryan, who screwed each other out of single match victories.
– Back with Cole and Ross, we find out Dr. Shelby’s “radical” new therapy. We go to a diner with Shelby and Bryan. Shelby feels they are close to a breakthrough and suggests a new therapy. We then see Kane, or “Gerald”, taking Daniel’s order. Daniel orders a veggie platter, a “tag partner who isn’t a seven-foot freak”, and a diet cola. Kane, sorry, “Gerald” mentions a cook with a scraggly goat beard who he deep-fried, chopped up his beard, and served it to everyone, who all drop their forks in disgust. Shelby asks Kane if he’s joking, and Kane says, “I don’t know what you’re talking about, I’m Gerald.” Freaking hilarious.
– Turns out the WWE fans get to decide Kane & Bryan’s official tag team name as part of tonight’s RawActive. Goody.
Zack Ryder & Santino Marella v. The Prime Time Players
The internet wonders teaming up? I can dig that, sucka. Take down by Ryder gets a two count on Young. Crossbody attempt ducked by Young, and Ryder hits the ropes. Headlock countered out by Ryder, who tags in Marella, who snaps off a sambo suplex and a headbutt. Titus breaks up the pinfall, Ryder tries and cut him off, but gets put into the ring post. Young makes a blind tag as Santino goes for the cobra, but Titus is in and gets the Clash of the Titus for the three. I blinked and the match was over.
Winners: The Prime Time Players
– We’re reminded about the exclusive interview with Lawler and find out that there will be a special guest on Raw tonight. Interesting…
– We learn more about WWE’s team-up with the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
– CRASSSHHH! “Mrs. Foley’s Baby Boy” is back on RAW as its special guest! Foley’s here not as a legend, but as a card-carrying member of the WWE Universe. He takes note of Punk’s emergence a year ago, and finds the change in the fans towards him, as well as the change in Punk, interesting. Before he can go further on, Punk interrupts, and seems none too pleased with Foley’s words. Ross takes note that Foley seems more reserved than usual.
– Punk tells Foley not to grandstand and just tell Punk to his face what he wants to say. Foley admits he’s had issues with relevancy and mentions how he, among others, sent texts to Punk congratulating him and as it turns out, was one of the few Punk actually responded to. He starts in on Punk’s relationship with Heyman, stating he, Foley, didn’t become a somebody until he STOPPED listening to Heyman. Foley warns Punk that Heyman only looks out for himself, and questions why Punk, one of the more inspirational, opinionated wrestlers, needs Heyman for a mouthpiece and worries if Punk has drunk the proverbial Kool-Aid. Punk feels they’re done, but Foley segues into the upcoming Hell in the Cell, about how it made and ultimately broke Foley’s career, and how it’s made legends out of HBK, HHH, and the Undertaker. Foley proposes that Punk go back to his roots and prove himself against Cena in the Cell. Punk craps on Foley’s speech, and how he and Bret have seemingly tried and latch themselves onto Punk and pull him down to their level. Punk states that it doesn’t matter to him what Foley, the fans, or Cena thinks of him, and states he doesn’t need to go through hell like Mick did. He touts his title reign, and Foley fires back that his collective reigns only went to 29 days, but it counts more for the moments he made as WWE Champion, not the numbers. He questions whether Punk wants to be a statistic or a legend. Cena’s here tonight with AJ, and Foley feels Punk should go to them and make himself a legend by challenging Cena to Hell in the Cell. Have a nice day. Very impactful promo right there from Foley.
– We get a recap of Ryback breaking up, literally, MizTV last week and find out that the IC Champ and Mr. “Feed Me More” will be having a match next!
Non-title match: Intercontinental Champ The Miz v. Ryback
Ryback shrugs off a right from Miz. More rights from Miz, but Ryback knocks him down, and shoulder thrusts him into the corner and gets a biel to the other side of the ring. Miz tries for a neckbreaker, but gets picked up into a powerslam. Miz escapes to the outside and tries to duck back in and nails a dropkick to Ryback, driving him into the ringside wall. Crossbody caught by Ryback, who tosses Miz back in. Miz with shots to Ryback and a DDT, but Ryback powers out at one. Kick countered into a spinebuster by Ryback, who finishes off the IC Champ with Shell Shocked for the three.
– More radical therapy from Dr. Shelby. Kane and Bryan agree how ridiculous the therapy is, and talk about how great it was to beat on eight other men last Friday night, going right into a “OW! YES!” bit straight out of “When Harry Met Sally.” Of course, we get the punchline with Mae Young, of all people. Oy vey.
– We’re backstage in AJ’s office, where AJ is letting the officials know it’s alright and that refs in the NBA, NFL, and the WWE all make mistakes and tell them to enjoy the rest of the show. Alberto Del Rio, Ricardo, and David Otunga come in, expecting her to rectify Booker T’s mistakes, but AJ instead mentions how they’ve all become victims of the Brogue Kick and gives them a chance for vengeance, booking them against Sheamus, Mysterio, and Sin Cara.
Wade Barrett v. Tyson Kidd
Tyson with some early offense and kicks, but Barrett counters into a vicious take down and a rope-assisted big boot that takes Kidd to the outside. Barrett rams him into the ring and rolls him back in. Tyson rolls him up for a quick two count, but Barrett snaps off the Winds of Change side slam, then the roaring elbow he calls “The Souvenir” puts Kidd down for the three count. No serious Nexus chants, so last week’s match with Gabriel was probably a coincidence given their history in Nexus.
Winner: Wade Barrett
– The exclusive interview with Jerry Lawler is next…
– Michael Cole in the ring, talking about how miraculous Lawler’s recovery has come along given the serious circumstances two weeks ago. He introduces Lawler to a standing ovation, who appreciates the introduction, and mentions his voice is still a bit raspy, and admits that all he remembers from a couple weeks ago is the first segment with Bret Hart, and thought when he woke up, he was still in Aruba with his girlfriend instead of a hospital. He notes how overwhelming the response has been to his recovery, and thanks everyone from the bottom of his heart for the support. Cole asks about when Jerry will return. Lawler admits the transition from 2 to 3 hours was difficult, and leaves his return up to the doctors, but he will take the first flight out to Raw the moment he’s cleared. Cole signs off with a congratulations to Lawler and a standing ovation from the crowd as we go into the next match…
– WWE Rewind recaps the tag match with Orton and Sheamus beating Ziggler and Del Rio, then we get another break once everyone’s made their entrance…
World Champion Sheamus, Sin Cara & Rey Mysterio v. Alberto Del Rio, David Otunga & Ricardo Roderiguez
We come back mid-match as Sheamus throws Otunga over the rope. Del Rio and Roderiguez try and pull Otunga down, but Sheamus flies over the rope on Otunga, followed by dives from Mysterio and Cara onto Del Rio and Roderiguez. Sin Cara and Roderiguez get tagged in, and Cara snaps off an arm drag on the announcer, but Del Rio sneaks in a shot on Sin Cara. Roderiguez with a shot and tags in Del Rio, who lays in shots to Sin Cara and a vicious kick for two. Roderiguez tags back in and tries to remove the mask, but Sin Cara kicks him off and tags in Mysterio, as Del Rio comes in. Shots to Del Rio, then a crossbody for two. Del Rio charges, gets drop toehold into the corner, but counters with an enziguri for a close two count as Rey tried to go up top. Otunga in with some shots as the Prime Time Players look on backstage. Otunga tags Ricardo in, who lays in on Mysterio. Del Rio tags back in and nails another enziguri for another two count. Chinlock on Mysterio, who struggles out with elbows, Del Rio tries a sunset flip, but Rey counters into a dropkick. Hot tag to Sheamus and Otunga, who gets bowled over with a shoulder block and a knee lift from Sheamus. Sheamus tries for the Brogue Kick, but Otunga tags out to Ricardo, who’s scared to death. Sheamus lays in on Ricardo, and blasts Del Rio off the apron. He holds Ricardo for Rey, who hits the 619 on Ricardo and hurricanranas Del Rio into the ring barrier. Sin Cara tags in and nails the top rope senton for three.
Winners: Sheamus, Sin Cara & Rey Mysterio
– Post-match, Sheamus nails yet ANOTHER Brogue Kick on Otunga to make the crowd happy.
– We hear from Cena later on his elbow surgery and just how serious it is.
– We’re back with more therapy and roleplaying with Dr. Shelby, Kane, and Bryan. His last bit of identity therapy involves Daniel (vegan) eating a pasta and meatball dinner, and Kane eating a salad, to “walk a mile int the other’s shoes.” Kane lets out a satisfied belch after the salad. Daniel looks repugnant at eating the meatball, seems okay with it at first, but then hurks in Dr. Shelby’s lap afterwards. Kane sums it all up: “Check please!” Epic, just epic.
– We find out the three team names for Bryan & Kane to vote on: Team Teamwork (Lame), Team Hell No (My vote), and Team Friendship (What’s probably going to be the choice thanks to the kiddies and smarks).
– We’re back as Bryan makes his entrance, followed by Kane’s pyro. Cole announces the new tag team name…TEAM HELL NO! I’m pleasantly surprised. Sandow and Rhodes ambush them and leave them laying as Rhodes gets on the mic and announces a new name for him and Sandow: The Rhodes Scholars. Catchy, a little obvious, but catchy. Damien says the tag champs now have a true reason to be angry, you’re welcome.
– We recap Heyman’s “indecent proposal” to AJ, her “response”, and Foley’s armor-piercing statement to Punk about being a “statistic or a legend.”
Divas Tag Match: Alicia Fox & Layla v. Divas Champion Eve Torres & Beth Phoenix
Layla kicks Beth and bounces her off the turnbuckle. Fox tags in and nails a dropkick for two. Beth reverses a whip to the corner, but gets sunset flipped for two. Beth overpowers Fox, and tags in Eve, who knocks off Layla while Beth suplexes Fox. Eve then hits her neckbreaker for the three count.
Winners: Eve and Beth Phoenix
– Post-match, Kaitlyn comes out and mentions her assault at NOC and that she scored some security footage from the hallway where she was taken down. Turns out her assailant was a blond. Eve points the fingers at Beth, who denies and calls Eve a liar. Eve hits Beth from behind and nails a neckbreaker. Um, okay. Don’t know where they’re going with this, and not sure if it’ll have a turnout that anyone will care about.
– Brodus and the Funkadactyls make their entrance for the next match…
Tensai v. Brodus Clay
We could have a Lesnar-Big Show moment if these two aren’t careful. Brodus nails Tensai with a headbutt, corner splash, and an exploder suplex, but misses the splash, as does Tensai. BIG SHOW comes out to interrupt, KO’ing Tensai. Clay seems riled up and charges Show, but gets a WMD for his efforts as well. Show leaves. Again, was there a point to this, besides Show finally showing up for the first time in over a month or so?
Winner: No Contest
– An update on Cena, his elbow surgery, and plans for Hell In The Cell coming up next…
– We find out Smackdown’s main event will be Randy Orton versus The Big Show.
– Cena makes his way down to the ring, arm and shoulder in sling following his surgery. He notes the mixed emotions of the crowd, admitting he probably shouldn’t be here, but thanks the crowd for supporting him, and tells people regardless of what they think of him, that they should never doubt the WWE Universe. He apologizes to Maddox and Chad Patton for the pressures they’ve endured from CM Punk. He feels Punk has misquoted him, and reminds us he stated the match at NOC would define who Punk is, and after the match, Punk has shown that he has turned into a bunch of PG-rated expletives Cena rambles off. He says it sucks about his injury, and can only guarantee to the world that he’ll be at Hell In The Cell to fight…Punk’s music hits as he and Heyman come to the ring, as Punk teases a handshake with a young fan.
– Punk “applauds” Cena for the fine speech and notes that Cena should be a politician for his attempts at “character assassination.” He says there’s always been one CM Punk, the one that beat Cena last year, twice in a row at Summerslam, and walked out from Night of Champions WWE Champion. Cena just tells Punk to shut up and accept his challenge at Hell in the Cell. He tells Cena he’s had shot after shot, and tells Albany to get in line while he talks down Cena. He gives Cena a chance to run before he makes Cena suffer more than he already has, and turns around to give him a five count to get out of the ring…Cena brandishes a lead pipe. Uh-oh. Punk turns around, Cena blasts Punk in the ribs, and Punk retreats, gasping and clawing at his WWE Title. Cena high-fives everyone, and we go backstage, where Punk runs into Mick Foley. Punk walks away at first, but comes back to cheap shot Foley. Punk contemplates more damage to Mick, but turns around to find Ryback staring him down as Punk looks on frightened as we fade to black.
– End show.
Credit: Ken Hill