9/10 Kester's WWE Raw Live Coverage Review: Bret Hart returns to Montreal, the fallout of the CM Punk and Paul Heyman alliance, Daniel Bryan continues to battle his anger issues, and more
By Ryan Kester
Monday Night Raw on USA Network
Aired live from Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
[Q1] Bret Hart made his entrance and the announcers sang his accolades. Hart thanked the fans and the crowd went ballistic. They didn't settle down even as he started into his promo, and Hart said that the last time he was here it was one of his darkest days, but also one of his proudest. He said Montreal has been in his heart for fifteen years and he thanked the fans for getting him through those dark days.
CM Punk's music hit and he entered in his Hart-tribute trunks and received great heat from the crowd. Punk said that hart'[s story has been well chronicled by his autobiography. Punk pondered what would have happened if he was in the ring with hart in '97 rather than Shawn Michaels. Punk said that the WWE as we know it would not exist. Punk said he would have beat Hart without the use of Vince McMahon.
Punk said he would have jumped to WCW after suck a victory and WWE would have died without its Attitude Era. Hart used his catchphrase and Punk said it kills him that he still uses that to this day. Punk turned his attention to jerry Lawler and he asked how the man was feeling.
Hart said that Lawler always showed up and he never walked out of the ring like a coward. Hart said that Punk did just that last week and hart set up footage of Punk interfering in the main event last week.
Punk said he was in his home town and was in a hurry to enjoy his day off. He said he returned for some things he left and found Cena in his way. Punk inquired where Cena was right now. Punk asked if Cena was going to save Hart tonight. Hart said that he did talk to Cena and he asked to come out here alone.
Punk started to get heated and he said that he is going to beat Cena this Sunday and cement his legacy as the greatest WWE Champion of all time. Punk said he deserves the ovation that Hart received tonight but instead it went to an overrated Hart. Punk said he would put Cena to sleep this Sunday.
[Q2] Hart quipped that Punk was putting the fans to sleep right now. Punk said he would turn Cena into a broken down shell of a man, just like Hart. Punk dropped his mic and walked away as the fans called him an asshole… [C]
Ryan's Reaction: Decent opener, but I expected a bit more fire from Punk than we got here. There's still plenty of time for him to get there tonight, though. I did like how Punk guaranteed victory against Cena, so we're starting this go home show off right.
A Raw Active graphic aired letting fans choose between Randy Orton, Jerry Lawler, and Brodus Clay as potential opponents for Punk tonight…
The announcers announced that Antonio Cesaro will defend his championship against the winner of a battle royal on the PPV preshow…
1. Kofi Kingston and R-Truth vs. The Miz and Antonio Cesaro (w/ Aksana) Kingston and truth dominated in the early going and they hit a tandem dive into their opponents on the floor. Miz and Cesaro sold at ringside as the show went to commercial… [C]
Back from the break, Cesaro had Truth in a rest hold and Aksana was swooning on the apron. Cesaro and Miz worked over Truth.
[Q3] Kingston eventually got the hot tag and he hit his move set on Cesaro. Miz tried to interfere but got taken out. Kingston caught Cesaro with Trouble In Paradise for the pinfall victory…
Kofi Kingston and R-Truth defeated The Miz and Antonio Cesaro in 8:02.
The announcers spoke about Sheamus' recent dominance and his new fascination with the Texas Cloverleaf… [C]
Ryan's Reaction: Decent match. It was a bit of a throwaway meant only to showcase the undercard champions before Night of Champions. It served that purpose well, but we really didn't get any memorable action from this contest.
A legal deposition between Sheamus, Ricardo Rodriguez, David Otunga, and Sheamus' Lawler aired. Otunga tried unsuccessfully to get Sheamus to take the meeting seriously. Otunga tried to legally claim how brutal the Brogue Kicks is and Sheamus spent the meeting making jokes. Sheamus Brogue kicked the camera…
The announcers announced Sheamus vs. David Otunga for later tonight…
Ryan's Reaction: That whole segment was brutal. It was obnoxious, made me dislike Sheamus, and lasted far too long.
[Q4][C] 2. Layla, Eve, and Kaitlyn vs. Beth Phoenix, Alicia Fox, and Natalya. The heels quickly got the better of Kaitlyn and they took turns working her over. Layla got a tag and she worked her new dancing offense.
Eve got a blind tag and took out Alicia Fox with a neckbreaker for the pinfall victory.
Layla, Eve, and Kaitlyn defeated Beth Phoenix, Alicia Fox, and Natalya in 2:23.
Eve went over the top nice in her celebration with her tag partners…
Punk approached a pissed off AJ backstage and he complained about how he has a match and Cena doesn’t. Punk mocked her for her episode last week and for dumping her back in the day. AJ said that things could be worse for Punk. She sardonically wished Punk luck and left. Punk turned around and ran into Brodus Clay, who was all smiles… [C]
Ryan's Reaction: The match was a completely throwaway and it's worrying that the story was all about Eve when Kaitlyn is the one challenging for the Divas' belt. The first hour has been a complete waste outside of seeing the Montreal crowd lose it for Hart.
[Q5] 3. CM Punk vs. Randy Orton. The two men traded control several times in the early going. Orton went for an RKO, Punk avoided, and Punk began walking up the ramp. Orton gave chase and punched Punk back to the ring. Punk dropkicked Orton's legs out from under him as he tried to get into the ring, and Orton sold at ringside while the show went to commercial... [C]
Back from the break, Punk was in control. Orton battled back and hit a superplex for a near fall. They both got to their feet and traded a series of counters to each other's arsenals.
[Q6] Punk called for the GTS but Orton attempted another RKO. Punk threw him off and Orton hit his backbreaker for another near fall. Orton hit his hanging DDT and hit the viper pose. Dolph Ziggler ran out and attacked Orton to end the match.
CM Punk vs. Randy Orton ended in an apparent no-contest in 13:43
Orton took out Ziggler and Punk, but they were able to overcome him due to numbers.
Lawler revealed his singlet and ran into the ring to save Orton. The men brawled as the show faded to commercial... [C]
Ryan's Reaction: That commercial cut was odd. The match was good up until the end. Orton has been doing good business recently and I would have liked to see him do so again here. Orton isn't challenging for a belt on Sunday so he could have taken the loss here without losing anything.
4. CM Punk and Dolph Ziggler (w/ Vickie Guererro) vs. Jerry Lawler and Randy Orton. Cole announced that AJ started this match during the break. Orton worked over Ziggler for a spell, but Lawler tagged in and the heels took control.
Lawler eventually got the hot tag to Orton, who wasted no time in taking out Ziggler. Paul Heyman made his entrance and he convened with Punk at ringside. Guererro screamed at the two men but they ignored her. Heyman retrieved Punk's title and the two chatted at ringside.
Back in the ring, Orton hit an RKO out of nowhere to pick up the pinfall victory…
Jerry Lawler and Randy Orton defeated Dolph Ziggler and CM punk in over 6:45.
Cole hyped Bret hart interviewing John Cena later on tonight…
Ryan's Reaction: Well, that was interesting. The match became pretty much background noise the moment Heyman made his entrance, but I like the way the two managed to get some heat just by ignoring a match Punk already said he didn't want to participate in.
[Q7] [C] Punk and Heyman were walking backstage. Matt Striker showed up and asked them about their relationship, and Punk said that he's a Paul Heyman guy…
Cole recapped the greatest hug in wrestling history between Daniel Bryan and Kane from last week. The inspirational music was a nice touch…
Kane and Bryan were backstage in an office with Dr. Shelby. AJ showed up said she asked Shelby to come here. Shelby said that the two men had to trust each other if they were going to overcome their issues… [C]
Heath Slater cut a brief promo about how Zack Ryder got lucky last week and he wanted a rematch. He did not get his wish…
5. Heath Slater vs. Ryback. Ryback hit some power moves and flattened Slater with his fisherman muscle buster.
Ryback squashed Heath Slater in 2:07.
[Q8] Ryback celebrated and led the crowd in a feed me more chant…
The Prime Time Players did their obnoxious routine backstage with AJ. AJ said there's been a mistake and they are not the number one contenders to the Tag team Titles. AJ told them they are irritating. AJ is my hero. AJ informed them that they have to make it through Daniel Bryan and Kane later on tonight to get the title shot… [C]
Ryan's Reaction: The live crowd seems absolutely dead. They popped for Hart at the beginning of the show but they have been dead ever since. With the show we've had thus far, I can't really blame them.
6. Daniel Bryan and Kane vs. The Primetime Players in a Number One Contender's match. Kane started for his team and he took the fight to Titus O'Neill. Kane slapped in Daniel Bryan and he took his turn putting the boots to O'Neill. Darren Young blind tagged in and the Players took control.
[Q9] Kane got the hot tag, no pun intended, and he took out O'Neill and Young. Kane took out Young with a chokeslam, Daniel Bryan blind tagged back into the match, and Kane chokeslammed Bryan. Bryan landed on the fallen Young and Bryan got the three count… [C]
Daniel Bryan and Kane defeated The Primetime Players to become the number one contenders to the Tag team Championships in 8:24.
Ryan's Reaction: That was a fun match. The Players continue to annoy me in a go away fashion, but I have been enjoying everything we've gotten from Bryan and Kane over the past few weeks and tonight was no exception. This strange bedfellows tag team could be fun for a little while.
[Q10] 7. Alberto Del Rio vs. Tyson Kidd. Kidd went for a Sharpshooter within twenty seconds and was of course kicked off. Kidd blasted Del Rio with a few kicks.
Kidd missed a springboard elbow and Del Rio started targeting Kidd's arm. Del Rio mocked going for the Sharpshooter, but Kidd reversed it and locked in the hold himself. Del Rio made the ropes and went back to work on Kidd's arm.
Del Rio locked in the crossarm breaker and got the tapout in short order…
Alberto del Rio defeated Tyson Kidd in 2:54
After the match, Del Rio called Kidd a peasant and said he would make Sheamus lose the World Title just like he made him lose the Brogue Kick.
Michael Cole announced that Jerry Lawler collapsed at ringside and he is receiving medical attention right now. He said Lawler is receiving CPR and this is not a part of tonight's entertainment. Cole was visibly shaken.
Ryan's Reaction: We have some information about Lawler up on the main page for those that want further details on what's happened.
8. Sheamus vs. David Otunga. Sheamus beat down Otunga and locked in the Texas Cloverleaf for the submission victory.
Sheamus defeated David Otunga in 1:23.
After the match, Sheamus hit Otunga with a Brogue Kick. AJ made her entrance but she was interrupted by Booker T. Booker said it's his business so he would handle things. AJ left.
Booker reprimanded Sheamus and he said if Sheamus uses the kick again he would be stripped of the World Heavyweight Championship…
Ryan's Reaction: I'm not a fan of this story. Sheamus hasn't looked the least bit hindered by the Brogue Kick banning, so his title doesn’t look the least bit in jeopardy.
[Q11] [C] A Tout from the tag team champions aired…
Daniel Bryan and Kane argued about their match backstage. Dr. Shelby told them they should call their team "Team Friendship." They did not take to this idea. At this point, Cole isn't talking at ringside.
Cole was shown at ringside choking up. Cole said that Lawler has been taken to a local hospital and is receiving oxygen, but he is breathing on his own. Cole reaffirmed that this is not part of tonight's entertainment. Cole said that out of respect for King there will be no more commentary on tonight's broadcast but they do hope to have more by the time the show is over…
[Q12] [C]9. Rey Mysterio vs. Cody Rhodes. Rhodes went on offense early, but Mysterio quickly made a comeback.
Miz ran out and interfered long enough for Rhodes to catch Mysterio with CrossRhodes. Rhodes hit Miz with the same move for good measure before holding the Intercontinental Title above his head… [C]
Cody Rhodes defeated Rey Mysterio in 4:18
Ryan's Reaction: Good, brief match. Rhodes looked vicious throughout. The current Lawler situation is hanging like a cloud over the crowd. My thoughts and prayers are with him.
Cole checked in at ringside, recounted the events with Lawler and he said that Lawler is responsive and awaiting a CAT scan… [C]
Bret Hart made his entrance. He called John Cena to the ring and Cena immediately made his entrance. Cena thanked Hart for asking him to come out. Hart said that Cena's feud with Punk reminded him a lot of his feud with Shawn Michaels back in the day.
Cena thanked Hart for mentioning him among those names. Cena said that Punk is an insecure guy that has to tell people how good he is while Michaels earned respect on his own. Hart asked what Cena would do to shut this phony punk up.
[Overrun] Punk made an entrance without music and questioned if Hart actually called him a phony. Cena tried to goad Punk into the ring. Punk said he does what he wants and he does what he decides. He said he decided to defend his good name in the face of such rampant and ridiculous disrespect.
Punk said it almost breaks his heart to see them in the ring together. He compared the two and said they were both surpassed by someone far superior to themselves. He said in reference to Cena, it was him, and in hart's case it was Shawn Michaels. Punk said he's better than Michaels.
Punk mentioned Steve Austin and he told hart that he's better than him too. Punk said he's better than The Rock. Punk said he's the best wrestler, talker, technician, and brawler. Punk said that makes him anything but a phony.
Cena called Punk a liar and a conceited scumbag. He said he learned tonight that Montreal is an honest city. Cena said he's going to hit Punk with a dose of truth. Cena said that for 300 days Punk has been champion and for 300 days his title has been irrelevant. Cena said that there is no conspiracy against Punk, he is just is a nobody. Cena said the night Punk made the most noise was the night he was silenced.
Cena said he went from an underdog to and odd-on favorite but he didn't change as he did it. Cena said that Punk changed multiple times, stole colors from Hall of famers and stole Randy Savage's elbow all because he hasn't found himself. Cena said that Punk retained the title by any means necessary but that does not make him a champion. Cena said that at Night of Champions, but is at risk of losing his WWE Title. Cena said something in French.
Punk said Cena has lowered himself to speaking the language of the locals. Cena cut him off and called him an ignorant son of a bitch. Cena said Punk says he's going to win at Night of Champions, but he is just going to kick his ass. The two men had a stare down, and Punk eventually backed away.
Punk went for a sucker punch but Cena blocked it. Cena took his shirt off and Punk tried to strike Hart. Hart blocked the punch and gave Punk one of his own. Punk high-tailed it up the ramp, holing his title like it was a baby.
Cole gave us a final update on Lawler and he said Lawler has stabilized. He is breathing on his own and his heart is beating on its own.
Ryan's Reaction: Ugh. They just completely emasculated Punk. This has to end with Punk defending his belt or they are burying his character fast. Overall, this night was a bit much. The show was lackluster throughout and it failed to sell me on the PPV. To be honest, little of that matters to me at the moment as my mind is occupied by Lawler. I hope they find out what happened with him, get it corrected, and Lawler gets back on his feet in short order.
If you have any questions or comments or just wish to chat with a fellow wrestling fan about whatever, then feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Twitter at @TheRyanKester.
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