2/23 WWE Raw in Turkey: John Cena vs. C.M. Punk in a Raw preview, The Shield vs. Ryback, Daniel Bryan, and Kane, Antonio Cesaro vs. R-Truth for the U.S. Title, Dolph Ziggler vs. Kofi Kingston, Alex Riley vs. Michael McGillicutty
WWE Raw live event
Report by Dot Net reader Taha Ercoskun Twitter.com/t4h4
It's the second time WWE came to Turkey. The advertising was done pretty well compared to the previous show. Cody Rhodes and Mark Henry visited Turkey at different times and were interviewed on numerous TV channels. Even Subway stations had the advertisements of the show. Unfortunately, ticket prices were twice as much as the previous show's prices, so the arena wasn't full. Soccer player Felipe Melo, from Brazilian international team, was in front row. Here's a picture from the arena's lower sections during the show: Twitter.com/T4H4/status/305794696653983744/photo/1 .
1. Antonio Cesaro beat R-Truth to retain the U.S. Title. Cesaro kept R-Truth down whole match with submissions and heel tactics. R-Truth made his comeback but when he dove at Cesaro in the corner, Cesaro moved and hit the Neutralizer for the pin after approximately ten minutes.
2. Alex Riley beat Michael McGillicutty. A decent back-and-forth match. McGillicutty got some good heat, although Riley didn't really stand out as the babyface character. Late in the match, Riley hit a spinebuster. McGillicutty tried a McGillicutter but Riley reversed and hit TKO for a two-count. McGillicutty regained control and jumped from the top-rope for a flying splash, but Riley moved and hit a corkscrew neckbreaker for the pin at approximately nine minutes.
David Otunga came to the ring and showed his muscular body. Tensai came too, for a match, but John Laurinaitis stopped them and showed a clip of Tensai dancing on Raw. Laurinaitis suggested that there would be a dance-off between Otunga and Tensai, and crowd accepted. Otunga danced to some '50s song in his full douchebag mode. Tensai danced to LMFAO's hit song, but he made Gangnam moves. Otunga cut him off by attacking, but Tensai quickly tossed him out of the ring.
3. Tensai beat David Otunga. The match began and dance moves were made throughout the match. Hilarity ensued (not). Otunga stopped Tensai's Vader splash and his a Cena-style shoulder block. Otunga kept him down with a chinlock, but Tensai forced out and hit a Chokebomb. Running senton finished at six minutes. Tensai danced with three kids after the match. One of the kids wanted to climb the turnbuckles for posing but the staff didn't let him. Poor kid.
4. Kofi Kingston defeated Dolph Ziggler (w/Big E. Langston) in their 457th match. They have wrestled pretty much every month since late 2009, right? Anyway, A.J. was not with Dolph. It was a hard-hitting back-and-forth match with Kofi having the loudest cheers of the night (after Cena). Ziggler tried to keep Kofi down, and each time Kingston tried to make a comeback, he was cut by Big E. Langston. Late in the match, Kofi hit a Boom Drop, but Ziggler ducked the Trouble in Paradise and applied a sleeper. Kofi quickly tossed him and when Ziggler charged at him in the corner, Kofi hit a pendulum kick a la Christian. Kofi then hit a springboard crossbody for a two-count. Dolph's Fameasser and S.O.S. both got two-counts respectively. Kofi went for a crossbody off the second rope, but Ziggler cut him with a dropkick mid-air. Kofi reversed a sleeper dropped Langston off the apron. Ziggler went for a sleeper once again but Kofi got out and hit Trouble in Paradise for the three-count after 13 minutes.
5. Mark Henry defeated Zack Ryder. Ryder got more offense than he usually gets on-air and he even hit the Broski Boot and Rough Ryder, but Henry kicked out at two. Ryder went for the leg lariat once again, but Henry cut him off with a World's Strongest Slam and scored the pin after about four minutes.
6. Ryback, Kane, and Daniel Bryan defeated The Shield by DQ. Daniel Bryan and Kane came out first. The Shield came to the ring through the audience and chambered the champions, but Ryback came to the ring to even the odds. Well, I guess it was supposed to be some sort of surprise, but it really wasn't, because Justin Roberts announced the match as a six-man tag match before Hell No came out. Anyway, late in the match, D-Bry and Ryback were both out and Kane fought against Rollins and Reigns on his own. He hit a double suplex and went for a double chokeslam, but Shield attacked with a chair and got disqualified. After the usual beatdown on champions, Ryback saved them and hit Shellshocked on Ambrose while Kane chokeslammed Rollins. Match ran about 12 minutes before the DQ.
7. John Cena defeated CM Punk after about 17 minutes. Kids were dying for Cena. Five minutes into the match, Punk walked out. Cena got the microphone and said "We're in Turkey and you're a chicken, Punk." Punk came back to the ring and match continued. Late in the match, Cena got Punk down with an STF, but Punk reached to the ropes. After referee pulled Cena from the ropes, Punk kicked Cena in the gut and hit Go 2 Sleep but could not score the pin. Punk climbed the ropes and hit the Macho Man elbow drop for a two-count. Punk once again tried a Go 2 Sleep but Cena reversed and surprisingly hit a huracanrana. Cena continued with Attitude Adjustment and pinned Punk to send kids home happy.
Note: The card was announced back in December. According to the card, matches were going to be as follows:
-John Cena vs. Dolph Ziggler and Big E. Langston (handicap match)
-CM Punk vs. Ryback,
-WWE Team Tag Championship: Team Shield vs. Team Hell No
-US Championship: Antonio Cesaro vs. Rey Mysterio.
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