Wow, they showed the blood in the video package... in color!
Monday Night Raw starring
Triple H is on WWE TV for the first time since WrestleMania and I'm genuinely intrigued here. If you'll recall, Lesnar and Triple H have never faced each other before. Just when it looked like they were going to feud, Lesnar took the Undisputed Title to Smackdown and Triple H got a belt from a briefcase. They were certainly setting something up there, but it was never to be due to Brock's hasty departure.
Triple H puts the kibosh on Lesnar's ludicrous demands and slaps Laurinaitis down, but assures Lesnar there's a place for him in WWE. "The WWE Universe wants to see you in a rematch with John Cena. They want to see you in the ring with CM Punk... Randy Orton... Sheamus." Well, two out of three ain't bad. Triple H says Lesnar will accept the contract he originally signed, but if Brock wants to take his ball and go home (again), he's free to do that as well. Laurinaitis tries to talk to HHH, giving Lesnar the opportunity to strike, attacking Triple H from behind and then ramming him with those patented shoulder strikes in the corner. VINTAGE LESNAR! Lesnar wraps Triple H's arm in the kimura lock and Cole speculates that the arm is broken. R-Truth, Sheamus, Kofi Kingston and Big Show rush to make the save, but the damage has been done. Excellent opening and the perfect direction to take the dangerous and out of control Lesnar.
Triple H is being tended to backstage, the only way his left arm could be in worse shape would be if it feuded with him in 2003.
Eve on stage now, talking like a weirdo and announces a Beat the Clock challenge to determine a new #1 contender for the WWE Title. Ugh, I hate Beat the Clock, get ready for several really short matches.
The Miz vs. Santino Marella is our first Beat the Clock match and Miz wins in 4:18. That's really all I got to say about this one. Like I said, Beat the Clock does not excite me at all, it drags the matches down, especially the pace-setter.
Layla vs. Nikki Bella vs. Brie Bella in a Triple Threat match for the Divas Championship is our Diva portion of the evening. And the match is over before I could even finish typing the participants in the match. Layla wins with a roll-up after the Bellas bonk heads. I think she just won Beat the Clock.
Chris Jericho vs. Big Show is our next Beat the Clock match, but I don't know how either of these guys are going to beat Layla's time of 0:00.00000000000001 seconds. JeriShow explodes in this match and it's actually kinda fun for Beat the Clock bullshit. Jericho gets a countout victory at 4:117, but the ref was counting too slow, so it actually was around 4:19, WWE goes to break to fix the mess.
Coming back from commercial, Miz does not get screwed out of his proper place as current #1 contender and WWE does the right thing by reversing the referee's decision. Justice prevails!
Brodus Clay vs. JTG up next and really, we're back to this pointless shit? Brodus wins another squash and has added bringing kids to the ring to do the pterodactyl. Okay, at least that's cute.
Lots of filler with stuff we've already seen. Hurry up, guys... we have several two minute matches to run!
Speaking of filler, Randy Orton, everybody! He's up against Jack Swagger in the next Beat the Clock match and this one could be great... if it weren't guaranteed to be 4 minutes or less. Crowd is red hot for Orton here, Dayton is a great wrestling town but almost always two years behind the trend. Decent back and forth action with Swagger slapping on the Ankle Lock, yeah! TAP ORTON! Sadly, Orton reverses and hits the RKO, picking up the win with 2 seconds to spare. Blurg.
Primo & Epico defend the tag titles against R-Truth & Kofi Kingston next! Epico and Primo have quietly had numerous great matches throughout the year and haven't quite got the respect they deserve for it... and they probably won't since they just lost the Tag Titles. Good match though and Dayton gets a title change. Hopefully this isn't the end of Rosa Mendes on my TV though.
Kane vs. Khali next? Really? As the Pet Shop Boys once said, "what have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve this?" YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWNNNNNNNNNNN and mercifully this one is over with neither man beating the clock.
Our final Beat the Clock Challenge match is Daniel Bryan vs. Jerry Lawler?! Honestly, Punk vs. Lawler and Punk vs. Bryan are more appealing than any of the other potential matches we've seen tonight, but I was personally hoping for Tensai. Laweler gets to hit all the patented Lawler spots (sans Piledriver), but Bryan clocks (pun intended) with a NASTY kick and applies the YESLOCK for an easy win and an obliterated clock. Looks like it'll be Best in the World vs. the other other Best in the World at Over the Limit. Well, that just made the PPV a must-buy.
Like I said in my Extreme Rules review, Bryan was solidified in that match last night and WWE is rewarding him for making the audience care about him. And we, the viewing audience, get to reap the benefits by getting CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan for the WWE Title on PPV. If you would've said that five years ago, you would've been laughed off the internet.
John Cena is here to a thunderous ovation, and all it took to get the crowd to like him again was almost get beaten to death! Cena's banged up, but unlike Triple H, his arm is not broken. Cena says he's "hurt," not "injured," so he will be competing at Over the Limit... so much for that vacation.
Little back and forth between Cena and Laurinaitis and we finally find out Cena's opponent for Over the Limit, Lord Tensai. Well, hardly shocking after he was left off the Beat the Clock challenge, but it's kinda anticlimactic after Lesnar. But wait! Ace attacks Cena from behind and announces that his opponent for OTL is... JOHNNY ACE! YOU GOT THE TOUCH!
Ace, Tensai and... the other guy with Tensai obliterate Cena and that actually turned out to be a fun little swerve. Cena probably should've taken that vacation, but this could be a lot of fun. It's certainly a retread of every evil authority figure bit ever, but Punk vs. Bryan and Triple H vs. Lesnar are both bigger matches, so I'll give it the old wait and see.
Not a great Raw after an amazing PPV though. Beat the Clock, while achieving an awesome result, is rarely enjoyable and there was a lot of filler in between. Don't lose your momentum now, WWE!