Twenty-four hours after the Battleground pay-per-view, World Wrestling Entertainment invaded the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for Monday Night Raw!
The Big Show left Randy Orton, Daniel Bryan and referee Scott Armstrong lying to close out Sunday's show. He would face the consequences of his actions the following night. Who would he answer to and what would they be?
Alberto Del Rio successfully defended his World Heavyweight Championship against Rob Van Dam at Battleground but would find out who his next challenger will be in an announcement no one could have seen coming.
CM Punk and Ryback met for the second time in two nights, this time in a tag team match.
After a newsworthy Raw that featured the payoff to a months-long angle and two major announcements regarding the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view, some Superstars are riding a wave of momentum while others suffered major setbacks Monday night.
Who are the winners and losers from the October 7 episode of Raw?
Let's find out right now.
The Big Show
For months, Big Show has been humiliated by Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. He has been manipulated and ordered to do their dirty work. He has knocked out friends and idols, and all because his financial livelihood depended on it.
After his actions on Sunday night and his not-so-apologetic attitude at the beginning of Monday's show, he was fired by Stephanie McMahon.
Later in the evening, as The Shield beat down Cody Rhodes, Goldust and Daniel Bryan, Show's music played and the giant made his way to the ring. He took down The Shield, twice, then stood in front of stunned COO Triple H. Suddenly, and without warning, Big Show knocked his former boss out to a huge pop from the members of the WWE Universe in attendance.
It was the culmination of an angle that began shortly after SummerSlam and had been building to that one punch. The fans reacted exactly as everyone involved hoped they would and, as a result, it was one of the top free TV moments of the year.
Big Show has been a key player in the angle the entire time, but after the reaction he received Monday night, it is clear that he is more relevant now than he has been in quite some time.
For weeks, Ziggler served as the whipping boy for other Superstars on the receiving end of a push.
Monday night, he picked up where he left off on Sunday's Battleground Kickoff show, defeating Damien Sandow in a hard-fought match.
Ziggler may not be involved in a major angle or feud, but at least he is winning.
R-Truth teamed with CM Punk to face Ryback and Curtis Axel in a major tag team match.
Truth has been irrelevant for so long that suddenly finding himself a secondary player in the CM Punk-Paul Heyman feud is a big step up from whatever he was doing before.
With a big pinfall victory over Intercontinental champion Axel, he immediately sets himself up for a rematch from Battleground. It was announced later in the Raw broadcast that that rematch will take place on this week's SmackDown.
Considering that he is on the poster and marketing materials for Hell in a Cell, do not be surprised if his presence on WWE programming increases in the coming weeks.
The Apex Predator of WWE continued to prove why he is one of the best, most polished in-ring workers today with a really good match against Kofi Kingston on Monday's show.
Orton is anything but a flashy worker. He is methodical and psychology-based, a throwback to old-school wrestling. He worked beautifully with Kingston, whom he has history with, en route to another win.
It was interesting that The Viper was not mixed up in the Big Show drama that closed the show, given the fact that he was knocked out by the giant 24 hours earlier, but he and Bryan did mix it up following his match to continue the build to their third, decisive match on October 27 at Hell in a Cell.
Alberto Del Rio
With the announcement that he will defend the World Heavyweight Championship against John Cena at Hell in a Cell, Alberto Del Rio will once again have the spotlight on him after months of flying under the radar as one of the best workers on the roster and the second-most important champion in the company.
The viciousness and aggression with which he attacked Ricardo Rodriguez after the personal ring announcer scored an upset win was refreshing and a nice addition to Del Rio's act.
More importantly, the manner in which he has used a steel chair to work over the left arm of Rob Van Dam and Rodriguez could be hinting at an angle involving Cena and his injured left triceps at Hell in a Cell.
The Aberdeen, Washington native, like Big Show, had been tormented by Triple H and Stephanie for so long that seeing him stand over the unconscious body of the COO and chanting "YES!" in unison with the fans in Pittsburgh was a fine moment.
His performance in the main event six-man tag was, as usually, exceptional and he once again seems poised to enter a major pay-per-view and leave with the WWE Championship around his waist.
Rough night to be that guy, huh?
CM Punk, Ryback and Paul Heyman
For months, the rivalry between Punk and Paul Heyman seemed like a main event angle. Even when Curtis Axel was thrown into the mix, the promo work was outstanding enough and the emotion was real enough that fans bought into it as a marquee feud.
After a mediocre match between Punk and Ryback at Battleground and the tag team match on Raw, which saw Punk team with R-Truth in a win over Ryback and Axel, the angle has cooled down significantly.
Considering Ryback's limited in-ring ability and the crowd's overall apathy toward him, it may not be as easy to bounce back as it would be with a better, more over wrestler.
The rookie Diva is a beautiful young woman. No one denies that. She has also been presented on the Total Divas show in a manner that suggests she may have the personality to thrive as an on-air talent.
Unfortunately, she was thrown into a bad situation on Raw as she made her in-ring debut in front of a live audience and noticeably struggled.
In no way was she as bad as Jackie Gayda, whose mixed tag match from July of 2002 is infamous in the wrestling industy, but she clearly was not ready to compete yet.
Her placement in the "losers" category is not a reflection of her effort, but more a reflection of whoever's decision it was to throw her in the ring, on live TV, at this point in her training.
The Rhodes Family
Cody Rhodes and Goldust were involved in the best match of the night at Battleground and were among the most over stars on the entire show.
Monday night, however, there was no followup to the hot angle. Instead, the brothers were involved in a tag match that saw Cody beaten down by The Shield for the majority of the match. After the bell, he and Goldust were attacked and tossed from the ring.
Following Big Show's knockout punch to Triple H, they were left lying on the arena floor while Daniel Bryan climbed in the squared circle and posed over the fallen COO.
Would it not have been fitting for the Rhodes brothers, who too had been tormented and toyed with by The Game, to have joined Bryan in the ring to close out the show?
There was a major missed opportunity to build on the momentum from Battleground and, instead, Cody and Goldust were treated as afterthoughts.
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