WWE Raw Review 9/19/11: HHH Fires Tag Team, Punk and Cena Team Up

Mike Shannon@@DLman91Featured ColumnistSeptember 20, 2011

-We are LIVE! from Cleveland, Ohio (picking on the Browns is like making fun of the guy with no legs...it's not even fair)

-Hey, Jim Ross is actually on commentary...did they actually figure out that Lawler and Booker sounded like total goons during the main event last night?

-CM Punk kicks us off and lets us know Cleveland hasn't been very lucky and Bob Holly is a bully (and a coward in my opinion). There is indeed a conspiracy but COOHHH's music cuts him off before Punk can finish the thought. Do you think Steve Jobs comes out to Metallica or something when he calls a staff meeting? Maybe he delivers Stone Cold Stunners to people who upset him and calls it the "iPain" or something like that.

Anyways, COOHHH puts over the match from last night and gloats about winning. Oh and in two weeks at Hell in the Cell, there's going to be a triple threat match for the world title between Punk, Del Rio and John Cena. Two weeks is not a lot of time to promote a PPV, especially if people just dropped money on the one last night. Wrestling fans aren't exactly the demographic with a ton of disposable income to spend on a $50 PPV every 14 days or so.

Punk goes back to the conspiracy talk and claims someone higher up than HHH is pulling the strings behind the scenes. BUT WAIT...Super Dave John Laurinaitis makes his way to the ring for some verbal abuse. Punk accuses Laurinaitis of orchestrating a conspiracy so he can be COO of the company, which is why Awesome Truth hit the ring last night.

Laurinaitis tries to fire Punk but Sherlock HHH puts a halt to that and promises to solve everything tonight before firing anyone. With that nose he should be able to sniff out any clues there might be.

-Two awful commercials during this break: One, it's good to see that Denny's actually has a cheese-inspired menu because American isn't fat enough without having cheese on absolutely everything. Secondly, are we really starting to make fun of people because they write with a paper and pen? Right, unless you spend $500 on an iPad, you're a moron...I hate advertising.


Wade Barrett, David Otunga, Mike McGillicutty & Christian vs. Air Boom, Sheamus & Justin Gabriel

Hey, a mini Nexus reunion! No one cares...film at 11. The faces trade off on McGillicutty early, but Mike catches Bourne with a sidewalk slam and he gets to play face-in-peril. Otunga lays in a few shots and Barrett adds a backbreaker for two before bringing in Captain Charisma for some choking.

Bourne gets a desperation high knee for a double KO but Otunga cuts off the tag and dumps Kofi just because. We get reminded for the 600th time that Otunga is indeed boring and married to Jennifer Hudson. Bourne dodges Otunga and gets the hot tag to Sheamus and the Irish Curse backbreaker gets two as the heels trigger a huge brawl.

Kofi gets rid of Barrett as JR actually says "WWF" on the air (it gets bleeped out of course). Sheamus almost gets his hands on Christian but has to settle to delivering a Brogue Kick and the Razor's Edge to Jobber Otunga for the win.

Winners: Sheamus, Air Boom & Justin Gabriel

-Please, please, please just send Otunga and McGillicutty back to FCW. The match was just designed to further the Christian-Sheamus storyline so there really wasn't much here but it was well-worked at least **.

-Meanwhile, HHH tells the referee that Awesome Truth roughed up last night not to worry. Alberto Del Rio storms in and complains but he certainly doesn't want the rematch tonight...he's simply not ready.


Alberto Del Rio vs. John Morrison

Del Rio understandably looks a bit cranky tonight. He immediately attacks and tries for the cross armbreaker early but gets hit with an enzugiri. Del Rio quickly shakes it off, snaps Morrison's arm in the ropes and locks on the cross armbreaker for the quick submission.

Winner: Alberto Del Rio

-Wow, did Morrison try to bring Melina backstage again or something? Getting squashed in 30 seconds isn't exactly a good showing for a supposed upper card guy like J-Mo. Oh well, I can't stand him anyways, so doesn't bother me...DUD.

So Hugh Jackman is here to promote his new movie and at least he's showing some enthusiasm unlike some of the other guest stars on this show. It kind of weird to hear him talking with his normal Australian accent while plugging the flick.

BUT WAIT...Vickie Guerrero makes her presence known and hits on Jackman while Dolph stands stunned. Ziggler freaks out on Hugh and runs down the town of Cleveland for a couple minutes while Vickie grins like a goof in the background.

Dolph starts mocking underdogs, so Jackman promises to go backstage and find the biggest underdog to face Dolph tonight. The crowd starts chanting for Zack Ryder and Jackman wisely plays it up, grabbing a "Ryder > Wolverine" and sprinting to the back. Not a bad appearance from Jackman actually as he seemed to be genuinely having fun out there.

-Meanwhile, Awesome Truth arrives...a little late, aren't you guys?

-Today's WWE Rewind: WHO'S THE REAL SIN CARA? I bet it's Brian Pillman under a mask. Or Dusty Rhodes. Or Hulk Hogan. Or Juan Cena.


Evil Sin Cara vs. Cody Rhodes

We could probably figure out who the real Sin Cara was by seeing who blows the most spots during the match. Babyface Sin Cara makes his way to the ring and the crowd seems to have settled on who the evil one is. Evil Sin (a really good name actually) attacks the Virtuous Sin Cara and they have a mini-match, exchanging flying headscissors. Babyface Sin Cara dropkicks the heel out of the ring and celebrates with a flip in the ring. Guess we're not getting the match, huh?

No Contest

-Nice work, Cody; hit the showers, big guy. The crowd was absolutely silent during that whole thing as well...at least it's not Undertaker vs. Undertaker.

-Meanwhile, Awesome Truth apologizes to COOHHH for their actions last night and Hunter accepts...as long as they each pay a $250,000 fine. The NFL could probably take a clue from Triple H. He also books them to face CM Punk and John Cena tonight...in that very ring.

-ANOTHER Three Musketeers movie? You mean that one with Kiefer Sutherland, Charlie Sheen and that BRUTAL Bryan Adams song didn't kill the franchise for good?

-Teddy Long informs JR that Randy Orton cashed in his rematch clause and they'll have a Hell in a Cell match at the next PPV.

-Mizark Henry comes down for an interview with JR and immediately gets the "What?" treatment. I can't believe the World's Fattest Man is getting the coveted "top of the hour" spot. Henry confronts JR about Ross wanting Henry fired and screws up by saying Ross thought he was an "overachiever". I think Mizark needs a dictionary before heading out to cut a promo.

Ross apologizes for doubting him but still gets roughed up. The King makes the save but Henry is still pissed off and delivers a headbutt to Lawler. The World's Fattest Slam puts Lawler down and I REALLY hope this doesn't mean we're stuck with Michael Cole by himself all night long...I'll never forgive Mark Henry for that.

Henry cleans off the announce table and delivers another World's Fattest Slam to Lawler, this time through the table. The crowd responds by yelling at him to go kill Michael Cole...funny. Haven't we already established that Henry is an unstoppable monster? I thought we were past him beating up non-wrestlers and senior citizens.

-Lawler gets helped to the back while Josh Mathews joins us for commentary.


Kelly Kelly & Eve vs. Beth Phoenix & Natalya

Beth looks like she's lost some weight and is actually looking pretty good. Beth pounds Kelly down but gets caught with her awful screaming flying headscissors. Eve comes in with TERRIBLE kicks so Beth boots her down and the heels double team her for two. Eve fights her way out of the heel corner and gets a school boy rollup out of nowhere for the win.

Winners: Kelly Kelly & Eve

-Wow, I'm glad they wasted my time with that one DUD.

-Meanwhile, Hugh Jackman meets Zack Ryder and calls him insane and pathetic...which makes him perfect as his choice to face Dolph Ziggler.


Zack Ryder vs. Dolph Ziggler

Hugh Jackman is such a good sport that he actually dons a Ryder "Broski" headband during the match. Ryder gets a quick rollup for two and hammers away in the corner before hitting the Woo Woo Woo Kick for two.

A Dolph superkick puts Ryder down and Ziggler hits a neckbreaker. Dolph gets distracted with Hugh Jackman and gets rolled up but he regains control with a dropkick for two.

Ziggler charges the corner but only hits knee and they clothesline each other for the double KO. Vickie gets a cheapshot on Ryder but the referee catches it and sends her packing to the locker room. Jackman takes advantage of the situation and hits Dolph with a right hand, allowing Ryder to hit the Rough Ryder for the win.

Winner: Zack Ryder

-If they are serious about pushing Zack Ryder, I will seriously be stunned. Match was short but fun **.

-A Jack Swagger hype video leads to Swagger sweet talking Vickie and officially joining her stable. I don't know why they keep pushing this heel vs. heel stuff when the crowd doesn't want to see it at all.

-Meanwhile, CM Punk and John Cena have a pow-wow and talk usual tough-guy stuff.

-Another video hypes the Hell in a Cell match as a career-ender.

-Awesome Truth sing and let Cleveland know they suck...good to see Miz still supports his hometown.


Awesome Truth vs. CM Punk & John Cena

Cena dominates Miz to start and Punk tags in for some double teaming and a leg drop for two. Miz manages a tag to R-Truth but he doesn't do much better and takes a northern lights suplex for two from Punk. A body slam allows a tag to Cena and Truth gets a tag to Miz, who quickly hits a short DDT for two. The match hits the heat spot and we take a break for hopefully the final time.

We return with Miz getting a boot to the face for two and he follows with his backbreaker/neckbreaker combo for two. Truth has to reel in his tag team partner because Miz was threatening to flip out on the referee once again.

Truth goes to the chinlock before switching off to the Miz again for some stomping. Cena fires off a gutwrench suplex out of nowhere for the double KO but Truth cuts off the tag. Cena continues to play Ricky Morton in the heel corner but and Miz cuts off yet another tag with a clothesline in the middle of the ring.

Miz misses a charge to the corner and the under-12 crowd goes nuts as Cena finally gets the hot tag to Punk, who clears the ring and hits a high knee/bulldog combo on Miz. Springboard clothesline puts Miz down and Punk looks to finish and Miz battles out but runs into Truth by accident. Punk hits the Go 2 Sleep and that's all she wrote for Awesome Truth.

Winners: CM Punk & John Cena

-Well, come on...you knew the title contenders were going to go over here. Match was pretty good with Cena getting worked over the entire match and Punk becoming the conquering hero ***.

-BUT WAIT...COOHHH is here for a few brief words: Awesome Truth is fired. Ummm, well OK then.

-Truth and Miz storm to the back and attack HHH but the entire roster of jobbers is there to pull them apart. William Regal tosses R-Truth and a few other guys get rid of Miz as HHH shoots John Laurinaitis a glare on his way out of the building.


Final Word

Well, aside from the main event, there really wasn't much in terms of workrate on tonight's show. I kind of enjoyed Hugh Jackman's role simply because he was having so much fun with it and didn't take himself too seriously.

On the bad side, the Cara vs. Cara thing is very flat, Mark Henry is still world champion, and we seem to be stuck in a funk with no one new getting over anytime soon.

Yet another average showing from Raw, which is not a good sign when you have to hype the hell out of a PPV that airs in two weeks.


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