WWE Raw Supershow Live Blog: Coverage and Analysis for 7/16/2012
One night after Money in the Bank, the 999th episode of Monday Night RAW takes place from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in the heart of Las Vegas. As WWE prepares for its incredible milestone next week, the final two-hour RAW in the foreseeable future will have a lot of fallout from Sunday night's pay-per-view.
Dolph Ziggler and John Cena are the two newest men to refer to themselves as Mr. Money in the Bank. What are both of their reactions to their new accolades? Will either one cash in and attempt to be a world champion when RAW has its 1,000th episode next week?
CM Punk held on to his WWE Championship Sunday night by taking care of Daniel Bryan. The insertion of AJ led to her being hit off the apron and eventually preventing both men from using weapons on one another. The barbaric no-disqualification match ended with Punk putting Bryan through a table and getting the three-count for the win. What will the unstable AJ do next with the two men in her life?
Also, next week will have the first appearance by Brock Lesnar on RAW in quite some time as he answers Triple H's SummerSlam challenge. Will The Game and WWE's COO make an appearance in Vegas to address the situation before next week?
We will also see our first appearance by The Miz on RAW in two months, as well as anticipation of an acting general manager before next week's official announcement. Will we also see another former superstar return in anticipation of RAW's 1,000th episode? We'll find out tonight.
Keep your browsers on this page and update it regularly to get live results and analysis of tonight's episode of Monday Night RAW.
Here are some of my thoughts from tonight's RAW episode:
So, that was a bit of an insane RAW episode to cover. There was just a lot going on that I tried to stay on top of it all. It took me away from my normal tweets during WWE events, but live blogging is such a unique thing to be doing. I want to thank everyone who read along throughout the night and the incredible number of comments attached to the article.
The tag team title match did not surprise me. They needed to have that match before the 30 days ran out from No Way Out. It was the only way to keep the storylines consistent. The match was good and it showed a backfiring interference by A.W., which cost his team. It'll be curious to see where this puts the rest of the tag teams in the division.
Del Rio's squash makes sense, obviously. He needs the momentum after losing at Money in the Bank. It also gave the perfect avenue for Mysterio's return, though I did think that if Mysterio could have returned, Money in the Bank could have been a good spot for it.
The Bryan/AJ feud, along with Cena cashing in against Punk, means that WWE is putting all of their eggs into one basket with episode 1,000 of RAW next week. If this seemed like a time where you thought you would see a guy like Alex Riley or Drew McIntyre next week, don't count on it. This show for next week is so heavy with eventful possibilities that it will be a big deal to make it onto next week's show. Simply put, WWE pulled out all of the stops for next week's RAW.
I hope you enjoyed following this week's RAW with this live blog. Feel free to follow me on Twitter for tweets about wrestling, links to my newest articles, and even talking back and forth with me about all things WWE.
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We are back and it is main event time. Yes, that's right. CM Punk is going to be in the main event. Punk comes to the ring with his championship as the talk of John Cena and his Money in the Bank briefcase continues. Big Show comes to the ring and it is time for the final match of the two-hour RAW era.
Main Event: Big Show vs CM Punk
CM Punk seems to be rather cautious out of the gate. If Punk gets too aggressive, he can really damage himself and leave himself open to John Cena's briefcase. Big Show muscles the early part of the match with slams to the champion and standing on top of the man who literally admitted to being half of the size of Big Show.
Punk is knocked to the outside where Big Show looks to continue the assault. He tries to shoulder carry Punk into the ringpost, but Punk wiggles away and Show goes shoulder-first into the post. Big Show doesn't quite release control as each attack is damaging the WWE Champion. Punk fights back with a few kicks to the head and a few slaps to get some room to breathe. Dazed for a second, Punk even locks a sleeper hold in to The World's Largest Athlete. Finally, Big Show breaks out of the hold with a side slam.
Big Show still has the advantage, but not as much. Big Show goes to the top rope and tries to fall onto Punk, but the champion gets out of the way. After a series of kicks and attacks off the ropes, Big Show counters into a back body drop. Big Show cocks back with a knockout blow, but Punk gets out of the way and counters with a few damaging kicks. After getting him into the corner, Big Show knocks Punk off as he tries for his patented bulldog from the corner. Big Show continues his assault, but tries to ram into Punk in the corner, but misses and is down on the ground.
Punk goes to the top rope and hits his Macho Man elbow drop for a two count and a violent kick out by Big Show. Big Show is able to continue his assault on Punk and even knocks the referee out of the way, which finally stops this match via disqualification.
Winner: CM Punk
The assault continues from Big Show, who continues to beat down CM Punk. John Cena's music hits and he comes running down with his Money in the Bank briefcase. Big Show gets out of the ring, allowing Big Show to cash in the briefcase. Cena grabs a microphone and tells CM Punk to prepare for their match next week, because John Cena will cash in Money in the Bank next week during the 1,000th episode of RAW.
Big Show tells Cena he would be a fool to not cash in right now as a referee comes into the ring. Big Show mentions that it has been a while since Cena was champion and how he designed the championship belt. Cena sticks to the match being next week when both men are fresh. Cena then states that his announcement about the briefcase is... hitting Big Show with the briefcase directly in the head.
CM Punk and John Cena stand in the ring together. One hold the Money in the Bank briefcase. The other holds the WWE Championship. Next week, one of those men will leave the 1,000th RAW as WWE Champion and either the historically-long reign of Punk comes to an end or the perfect record of Money in the Bank cash-ins comes to an end. All of that and much much more next week on RAW.
Another reminder of Daniel Bryan and AJ's wedding is made with a fancy invitation made up. It is also announced that Christian will host The Peep Show this Friday night on Smackdown with the happy couple, AJ and Daniel Bryan.
JTG comes to the ring with a different look than he has usually had. JTG now has regular red trunks with a vest for his entrance and hair tied up in a ponytail. It matches his picture on WWE.com in the superstars page.
Match 5: Brodus Clay vs JTG
The match begins like a regular dominant effort by Clay. It all turns around when JTG gets a shot in on the injured left knee of Brodus Clay. JTG focuses in on the knee, knocking the big man down to all fours. This allows JTG to keep the pressure on him and even get a few kicks in on Clay. As JTG is admiring his work, Clay comes back together and starts to dominate again.
A few suplexes, a headbutt and a big splash has Brodus Clay taking care of business.
Winner: Brodus Clay
Following the match, it is the typical business of Clay dancing with the little citizens of the WWE Universe. CM Punk and Big Show is coming up next.
A lot of updates as we return to RAW. The Rock and Brock Lesnar will both be on RAW next week for the 1,000th episode of RAW, while the show begins at 8 pm with a reunion of DX. WWE also shows some of the Touts from fans from earlier in the night. It is also announced with fancy background music that Daniel Bryan and AJ will get married next week.
Brodus Clay comes to the ring ready for a match. Along with Cameron and Naomi, the trio are all wearing lime green color.
Before we go to a break, there's an announcement. The results to that live poll are tallied. In a very close poll, Christian gets 36% of the vote and will defend his Intercontinental Championship next week on the 1,000th RAW episode. Following close by with 34% was Layla and her Divas Championship, while Santino and the United States Championship pulled in 30% of the vote.
RAW returns as they show John Cena's Tout from earlier today. He shows his dented Money in the Bank briefcase and said there was an announcement for later tonight.
Speaking of Mr. Money in the Bank, Vickie Guerrero starts yelling "Excuse Me!" and introduces Dolph Ziggler, the World Heavyweight Championship Money in the Bank winner. Ziggler comes to the ring and says that his briefcase guarantees that he will be the next World Heavyweight Champion.
Ziggler says that he will be better than the rest and names a few great names, such as Bret Hart and The Rock. This brings out Chris Jericho, who strolls out to the ring. Ziggler cuts off Jericho before he can speak to say that this isn't about him. Ziggler says that he won, but Jericho did not. Ziggler wonders when the last time was that Jericho won anything. He also addresses Jericho's latest stint in WWE and how it has been all hype so far.
Ziggler says that he thinks Jericho has lost his touch while Jericho stands silent. Jericho delivers a Codebreaker to Ziggler and walks out, still not uttering a word. It reminds me a lot of Jericho's original return six months ago, when Jericho did not speak until just prior to Royal Rumble.
Another RAW memorable moment is remembered as a classic Attitude Era moment is recapped. The classic moment shows Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock trash talking in what resulted in The Rock tossing Austin off a bridge.
Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler recap tweets just sent out by Daniel Bryan and AJ that say that they will get married next week on the 1,000th episode of Monday Night RAW.
Jack Swagger heads to the ring for a match and is quickly followed by Ryback. Ryback, who is billed from Sin City, is here in Las Vegas to a great ovation. As he tries to get into the ring, Swagger attacks him. The bell never officially rings, making it not an official match. Swagger beats down on Ryback, including a splash and an attempt at an ankle lock. Ryback fights out of that, shows off with a couple of damaging clotheslines and a series of powerbombs without breaking the hold on Swagger. Swagger then rolls out of the ring, effectively ending the fight.
Ryback stands in the ring and gets the crowd to chant "Feed Me More!" with him. This is the first time there really has been a high percentage of fans chanting for Ryback. This is a good sign for him. It seems like allowing him to be beaten down a little bit is actually a good thing for his character.
Eve comes to the ring to announce her hand-picked partner for the match. It is none other than The Miz, who returned to the ring at Money in the Bank last night. We then see Daniel Bryan and AJ enter the ring to get the match started.
Match 4: The Miz and Eve vs Daniel Bryan and AJ
Bryan and Miz begin the match. It's interesting to see how their history is not addressed at all by the commentators. A repeated amount of kicks from Bryan ultimately gets countered by The Miz. A few damaging shots from The Miz and Bryan is dazed in his own corner. AJ tags herself in, which forces The Miz to tag in Eve. Eve takes direct advantage over AJ, showing her size advantage over AJ.
AJ tends to turn the tables with a series of kicks, just like Bryan would do. As AJ goes for a pinfall, The Miz distracts the referee, which costs AJ a pinfall attempt. The Miz goes back to the corner, but AJ goes over to The Miz and kicks him off the apron. The Miz tries to get to AJ, but is held back by the referee.
Eve goes for a roll-up on AJ, but the referee is still distracted. Bryan comes into the ring and turns the pinfall around. As the referee turns around, AJ is the one pinning Eve. The referee counts to three and the team of Bryan and AJ pull a fast one.
Winners: Daniel Bryan and AJ
Bryan is in the ring with a microphone. He says that he loves AJ and that, while his intentions were bad last week, all he wants this time around is AJ. Bryan then gets handed a box from the guy on the outside, which contains a ring in it. Bryan gets on one knee and proposes to AJ. After a violent chant of "NO!" from most of the crowd, AJ says yes and they hug and kiss in the ring as we head to commercial.
Heath Slater is in the ring asking who his next opponent is supposed to be. Suddenly, familar music hits and RIkishi comes out! RIkishi looks a little bit heavier than he did last time, but still seems to have the moves.
Match 3: Heath Slater vs Rikishi
RIkishi attacks Slater right out of the gate and even has his old t-shirt on. Rikishi knocks Slater into the corner for a Stinkface, a patented move from Rikishi. He then waits for Slater to get up as he shows a taped up thumb. Rikishi cuts a cross in the air before delivering a Samoan Spike, a tribute to Umaga, his brother who passed away a few years ago. Rikishi then goes to the corner for a Banzai Drop, a throwback to Yokozuna, his late cousin.
RIkishi even delivers the Banzai Drop and stays seated on Slater for the three count.
It's very cool to see Rikishi in a ring again as he stands in the middle of the ring. He poses like he is ready to dance as the lights go out. They come back on with The Usos, the two sons of Rikishi, standing on either side of them. The three are wearing hats and begin to dance in celebration. It was such a great moment.
Eve and a partner against Daniel Bryan and AJ is up next.
WWE RAW returns with discussion about Tout, the new social media aspect that WWE will be promoting heavily between now and next week's change in format for RAW. It included talking about Cena sending out a Tout about tonight's announcement, as well as showing his first Tout about his favorite RAW moment.
Speaking of social media, here comes Zack Ryder. Literally as Ryder enters the ring, Alberto Del Rio's music hits. Del Rio looks determined after his World Heavyweight Championship match loss last night at Money in the Bank.
Match 2: Zack Ryder vs Alberto Del Rio
Del Rio is aggressive from the beginning, working on the left arm of Ryder. Ryder goes to the outside, but is followed by Del Rio. A knock into the steps and the guardrail continues the punishment on Ryder. Ryder kicks Del Rio away for a little bit of offense, but Del Rio gets back into the ring and locks in a cross armbreaker for the victory.
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
Del Rio continues to apply pressure on Ryder with the cross armbreaker. Suddenly, music hits and it is the return of Rey Mysterio! Mysterio runs to the ring and attacks Del Rio, who is the reason for Mysterio's departure via storyline. Del Rio gets whipped into the ropes and a 619 comes Del Rio's way. Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez run backstage as Rey Mysterio has officially returned.
If he could have returned tonight, why not put Mysterio in the RAW Money in the Bank ladder match last night? Oh, well. Just a thought.
RAW memorable moments are now under the perspective of Heath Slater, who looks back at the weeks of being beaten down by RAW legends. This will lead to the latest legend returning to face The One Man Rock Band next!
We are back from break and we see Young and Kingston in the ring. Young reaches for a tag, but not to the knowledge of Kofi, who tries to roll up Young. O'Neil comes in and takes control of Kingston with bear hugs and aggressive shots. Kingston is the corner and O'Neil gets into it with referee Mike Chioda. Young gets a tag in and is working on Kingston while A.W. works on Young's afro.
Young loses track of Kingston for an instant and Kofi dives to R-Truth for a hot tag. Truth is in control, so A.W. tries to get the attention of the referee. Kingston hits Trouble in Paradise into R-Truth's Little Jimmy finisher for the three count and a title defense.
Winners: Kofi Kingston and R-Truth (Still WWE Tag Team Champions)
A.W. is animated to the referee, taking his jacket off and nearly knocking into the referee. He needs to be restrained by Darren Young as we go backstage.
Back there, it is AJ talking to Daniel Bryan, explaining that she called the match down the middle last night. Bryan apologizes for the way he has treated AJ since WrestleMania and is about to tell her something when he is interrupted by Eve. Eve complains that Bryan left her during their mixed tag team match last week.
Eve says that she complained to the WWE Board of Directors and was granted another match tonight. Eve and a teammate of her choosing will take on Daniel Bryan and AJ. Eve says that payback is... well, exactly what AJ is. That's Eve's words, not mine. Bryan then says to AJ that he will tell her after they win tonight.
RAW is back from commercial and being social media savvy as usual. On WWE.com, you can vote now for what championship you would like to see defended next week on the 1,000th RAW episode. The choices are Santino Marella's United States Championship, Christian's Intercontinental Championship or Layla's Divas Championship.
Kofi Kingston and R-Truth come out for their WWE Tag Team Championship match, followed closely by A.W., who announces The Primetime Players. Darren Young and Titus O'Neil come to the ring in matching purple tights. In the middle of the entrances, it is stated that a DX reunion will lead off the 1,000th episode of RAW next week.
Match 1: Kofi Kingston and R-Truth vs Titus O'Neil and Darren Young (WWE Tag Team Championship)
Young and Kingston begin the match and the champs have some quick tags and tag team moves to get the best of Young. Young gets out of the ring and R-Truth gets tagged in. Truth gets on all fours and Kingston launches off of his back and onto O'Neil and Young on the outside. It is all Kingston and R-Truth to start off as we head to commercial.
We are live from Las Vegas, but without a RAW Roulette format for some reason. They lead with the image of John Cena holding the Money in the Bank briefcase and reiterate that he has one full year to cash in the briefcase.
Tonight, CM Punk will take on Big Show in a match that is highly touted by Jerry Lawler and Michael Cole on commentary.
Speaking of Punk, his music hits and the WWE Champion comes to the ring with one of his patented "pipebombs" in hand. Cole and Lawler talk about how guest referee AJ was rather impartial last night in the WWE Championship match between Punk and Bryan. A resounding chant for Punk from the crowd before the champion could utter one word.
Punk says that, for someone straightedge, it sounds strange, but he loves Las Vegas. Punk recounts how it was Las Vegas that was the site for his infamous promo last summer. Punk says that he has beaten everyone, including Daniel Bryan, and did so with a confused referee in AJ who was unsure to be on his side or not.
Punk remarks about the 1,000th episode of RAW next week and how he will be proud to be WWE Champion next week, especially since a guy like him wouldn't have been in the WWE when the first episode of RAW was broadcast. Just as Punk is talking, Big Show's music hits and the World's Largest Athlete comes to the ring.
A chorus of boos greets Big Show as he complains about how he was just inches from becoming Mr. Money in the Bank last night. A "Big Show Sucks" chant begins. Big Show says that Cena was in the right place at the right time as usual. He also says that if he was Mr. Money in the Bank, he would cash in right now.
Punk counters with how he "almost" won the match. Punk talks about how Big Show always destroys people, but comes up just short all the time. Punk says that Show has the size and strength, but he lost. Punk, who is half the size of Show, is WWE Champion and has the respect of the fans, while Show has big pockets and few friends.
Show says that if Punk left tomorrow, the WWE Universe would move on. Big Show says that the company revolves around one man and they are both cogs in the machine. That "cog in the machine" line is a throwback to Punk's promo from last summer. Big Show plants the seed in Punk's head that when Big Show knocks out the champion, Cena can cash in Money in the Bank and leave tonight as WWE Champion.
Punk stands in the ring with a concerned look on his face, while Big Show leaves and Cole mentions that John Cena tweeted about how he had an announcement for tonight. Cole and Lawler also mention that the first episode of Monday Night RAW is available at the WWE YouTube page, as well as saying that The Rock will appear next week on the 1,000th episode of RAW.
Suddenly, we are backstage and Kofi Kingston, R-Truth and Little Jimmy are on their way out. There's a WWE Tag Team Championship match coming up next!
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