Yes, the World Traveler is home. My apologies for no TNA Recap, last week. During that show, I was sitting in a nice hotel in Warsaw, Poland.
Before I begin the recap, I want to thank a few people. Bill Apter, it was a joy and pleasure, as always, to be in your presence. I always learn so much from you. Kevin Sullivan, thank you for your wisdom, as well. I’m so hoping to see you get you most deserved spot in the Hall of Fame, next year. Jimmy Hart, you were so gracious and genuine. Your insights into this business is beyond compare. I learned more from you three gentlemen, in two days, than I’ve learned in 44 years as a fan and 8 years writing about the wonderful sport.
On to this week’s action. The show opened with a look at the issues between C.M. Punk and Jerry Lawler. Punk issued a challenge for a fight. It ended up inside a steel cage, thanks to fans voting. P:unk just destroyed Lawler and forced The King to tap out to the Anaconda Vise. A.J. Lee came out, after the match, and said Punk would fight John Cena at Night of Champions. Punk went back inside the cage and beat on Lawler, even more. Cena tried to get in the cage, but couldn’t. When the cage finally did lift, Punk scooted out of the ring like a cockroach when the lights come on.
Michael Cole sent it back to his entrance. Lawler’s music hit but he didn’t come out. The reason was that Lawler and Punk were fighting, backstage. It took three refs to pull Punk off Lawler. Lawler rushed PUnk and got kicked right in the face.
Roll the updated opening montage.
Sheamus was introduced to the Chicago crowd. Sheamus said the party never ends in Chicago. He did say the party was going to end for Alberto Del Rio…
C.M. Punk arrived adn the crowd went wild. Punk, of course, is from Chi-Town. Lots of great sports people from Chicago: The Road Warriors, Andrew Golota, etc… Deafening “C.M. Punk” chant. He grinned at the love of his own. Punk did a semi-Foley pop. Punk said the fans could relate to him because they were from the same place. Punk admitted that he beat up Jerry Lawler. Punk claimed that Lawler jumped him from behind. Punk said he went “Chicago Style” on Lawler. Punk was tired of having Lawler attacking his integrity. Punk decided, last week, to teach Lawler a lesson. Punk then brought up the “White Knight”, John Cena, who came to Lawler’s rescue. Punk said Lawler accused him of turning his back on the WWE Universe. Punk said Cena helped, and thus agreed with, Jerry Lawler. By doing that, John Cena showed disrespect to him. Punk showed off the title that he has held for 288 days.
Sheamus got tired of Punk’s ramblings and cut him off. Sheamus said he didn’t want to hear Punk go on for a half hour.
Sheamus couldn’t believe that Punk interrupted him. He accused Punk of doing exactly what he accused The Rock of doing. Sheamus questioned Punk’s guts. He challenged him to join him, in the ring. Punk said Sheamus was, at best, the second best in the World, behind him. Punk then told Sheamus to shut his mouth. Sheamus felt Punk was talking out of his arse…
A.J. Lee waltzed out on the stage. Lee had an announcement to make. She wanted the two challengers (Alberto Del Rio and John Cena) would square off. Also, Punk and Sheamus would battle in a Champion vs Champion match. A.J. then skipped down and around the ring and to the back. In the concourse, Randy Orton walked and psyched himself up.
Vickie Guerrero came out and said she had personal issues with A.J. Lee, which she would discuss later. Right now, she wanted to bring out her man, Dolph Ziggler.
Dolph Ziggler vs Randy Orton
Raw showed highlights of the match between Randy Orton and Dolph Ziggler, from last week’s Smackdown. Orton defeated Ziggler, so Dolph demanded a rematch to prove his superiority. After the introductions, the two went into a Collar and Elbow. Orton with a Push Off but Dolph with a Dropkick and strut. Orton with a Side Headlock and a shoulder Tackle and Dropkick off the Universal. 2 count. Orton Stomp. European Uppercut by Orton. Irish Whip but Dolph with the Float Over. Orton with the Blanchard Slingshot Suplex. Dolph attacked Orton, in the corner.
Dolph with an Irish Whip but Randy exploded out of the corner with a Clothesline. The two went out to the floor to fight. Orton pitched Dolph into the barrier and then Clotheslined him. Orton slid back into the ring as Raw took a break.
Dolph went after Orton’s ribs. Orton with a Headbutt and then sent Dolph sailing. Corner punches by Orton. Dolph kicked the knee of The Viper and then hit a Rolling Neckbreaker. They went tot he outside and Dolph whipped Orton into the ring barricade. Back in the ring, there was a two count for Dolph. Jumping Elbow Drop for a two. Dolph with a Rear Chin Lock into a Shoulder Handstand to show off. Dolph grinded away at hte Rear Chin Lock. Orton got up and hit a Headbutt. Kitchen Sink by Dolph. Dolph missed the Jumping Elbow Drop. Orton and Dolph traded punches. Orton with a whip tot he corner. BIg Boot and Running Clothesline by Dolph, for a two. Dolph went to the top rope and waited. Orton blasted Dolph, causing him to fall onto the turnbuckles. European Uppercut and Headbutt were the harbingers of a Superplex by Orton. 1-2-no.
Orton with a Pair of Clotheslines and the Snap Powerslam. Rope Assisted DDT was blocked and Dolph snapped the arm over the top rope. Twisted Sister Backbreaker by Orton for a two. Ziggler with a Jumping DDT for the near fall. Orton dodged the Famouser and took out Dolph with the Rope Assisted DDT. Orton went to his “special place” Dolph blocked the R-K-O. Roll-up went back and forth, until Dolph used the tights to pin Orton.
Your Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Grade: A- (92%)
The Miz strolled out from the back, brandishing his ivory Intercontinental championship. Miz announced that he was going to join Michael Cole, for the rest of the show, on commentary. Miz is one of the best mic men in the sport, today, so this should be good.
Cole and Miz sent ti to another look at Anger Management. Oh, joy, another set of dumb vignettes. It was time to look at the Anger Collages. Daniel Bryan’s collage had Yes and No scribbled on a piece of paper. That led to a Yes/No singsong scream fest. Kane was then asked to share his college. The page was blank. Punk said he was going to show how he feels inside. He set off a fireball in the trash can, after throwing away his paper. Daniel called Kane “Teacher’s Pet”.
Backstage, SIn Cara warmed up for his tag match with Rey Mysterio. Cole looked at Cody Rhodes trying to steal Rey’s mask. Sin Cara made the save and then forced a Sin Cara mask on Cody.
Sin Cara and Rey Mysterio vs Tensai (w/Sakamoto) and Cody Rhodes
Cody and Sin Cara to start. Cody with a hard kick and slap. Backspring Elbow by Sin Cara. Cody scooted to his corner. Raw went to commercial.
Tensai was beating on Sin Cara as the show returned. Tensai with brutal Headbutts and a tag to Cody. Cody with repeated kicks. Tensai with a Headbutt as the ref was distracted. Cody got a two count. Cody with a Flying Surfboard. (I’ve been in that move, during training sessions, and it’s not a fun place to be). Cody threw Sin Cara tot he corner and tagged in Tensai. Short Arm Clothesline by Tensai. Scoop Slam by Tensai into the Traps Claw. It was determined that Lawler would not be able to return to the announce desk, this week.
Sin Cara with a Step-Up Enziguri. Tag to Cody. Tag to Rey.Tilt-a-Whirl Head Scissors by Rey. Rey Dropped the Dime off the corner for a two. Rey rolled through a Roll up and hit a Dropkick. Tensai came in and attacked Rey. Rey caught Tensai with the 619. Missile Dropkick by Sin Cara on Tensai. Front Drop Suplex by Cody on Rey. Cody went for a Power Bomb but it ended up going into the 619. Swanton by Sin Cara to pick up the win.
Your Winners: Sin Cara and Rey Mysterio
Grade: A (94%)
I want to see the Luchas go after the tag belts. Can’t call them Los Luchas, that team name already belongs to Phoenix Star and Zokre.
It was time for part two of this week’s Anger Management. It was time for the Circle of Trust exercise. Whatever. Daniel and Kane didn’t want to participate. Daniel had to fall back and let Kane catch him. “I Will?” quiped Kane. Daniel just didn’t want to do it, but he agreed, so he wouldn’t have to return to do it. Kane actually caught Daniel. Daniela nd Kane then had to work together to catch Harold. They let him hit the floor. Daniel said he finally understood Kane. Harold was in need of some major medical attention.
Sheamus vs C.M. Punk
Champion vs Champion Match
The Chicago crowd was totally behind Punk. Punk said the fans respect him in his home town. Punk knew that WWE Champ vs World Champ would be a Wrestlemania match. Punk didn’t appreciate being paraded out, just because he’s from Chi-town. Punk decided to take part in Labor Day, and take the day off work. The crowd went seriously hostile on Punk. Really?
Sheamus grabbed the mic and said Punk was showing disrespect to his fans by walking away. Punk kept strolling, backstage. A.J. Lee rushed over and said Punk couldn’t leave. Punk said he had “personal days” and was taking one. Matt Striker rushed over and asked A.J. Lee what she was going to do. Lee told Striker, who she didn’t recognize, to go tell Sheamus to stay in the ring. She would find him an opponent.
Your Winner: No Contest
Sheamus was still in the ring as Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez strolled out from the back. Miz did not agree with Punk walking out on the match and the fans.
Sheamus vs Jack Swagger
The two men locked up, as Alberto joined the announce team. Go Behind by Swagger but Sheamus broke free. Shoulder Tackle by Sheamus for two. Shoulder Thrusts by Swagger, in the corner. Sheamus blasted Swagger and a Shoulder Block off the top rope. Swagger with a boot and a Spear. 1 count only. Swagger punched away, in the corner. Swagger with an Irish Whip but he ate a Big Boot and Celtic Hammers. Flying Shoulder, in the corner. Swagger dodged the high knee. Sheamus blocked the Gut Wrench Powerbomb. Swagger Bomb for a two. Sheamnus trapped Swagger in the Four Leaf Clover (Texas Cloverleaf). Swagger tapped out.
Your Winner: Sheamus
Grade: B (85%)
Del Rio attacked Sheamus, after the match. Sheamus fought back and Rodriguez got involved. Sheamus with WHite Noise to Del RIo. Sheamus prepared to take out Del Rio but Rodriguez took the Brogue Kick bullet for his boss.
Raw showed how Kaitlyn became the number one contender. That happened two weeks ago.
Eve Torres vs Kaitlyn
The two locked up and Eve with the Go Behind. Standing Switch and Back Heel Trip bu Kaitlyn. Flying Crossbody by Kaitlyn for a two. Side Headlock by Kaitlyn. Universal blocked by Kaitlyn. Forearm by Kaitlyn, returned by Eve. Double Leg Trip by Eve. Layla and Miz kept going back and forth with verbal shots at each other. Eve offered a handshake, which Kaitlyn slapped away. Eve worked over Kaitlyn’s arm Kaitlyn got sent to the mat by the Drop Toe Hold. Front Face Lock by Eve. The back and forth between Miz and Layla was annoying as Hell. Eve sent Kaitlyn down. The ref checked on her, as she seemed hurt. Eve with a Power Spin Neckbreaker to get the three.
Your Winner: Eve Torres
Grade: C (73%_
Eve showed good sportswomanship, after the math. Eve then came out to talk to Layla. She offered her hand to Layla. Layla went off on Miz for telling her to shake Eve’s hand. They did shake hands.
Jack Swagger walked, downtrodden, backstage. Jack told A.J. Lee that he was taking some extended time off, because he was better than this. She couldn’t believe that Swagger was going to do like Brock Lesnar, Chris Jericho and C.M. Punk and walk out on her. Her GM position has got to be in deep water, I would think.
Part Three of Anger Management was up next. It was graduation time at the forced class. Daniel talked about his past anger problem. He offered Kane a rematch, anytime he wants. Kane thanked Daniel and agreed to do his best not to eviscerate Daniel. Daniel said Kane would be tapping out. Kane threatened to attack Daniel. Harold tried to calm them down and they both told him to shut up. The Doctor got his fill of the bickering and exploded at the situation.
Michael Cole came on the house microphone. The WWE Universe had three choices for Daniel Bryan and Kane: a standard match, a tag match or a “Hug it Out” session. Yeah, we can see where this is going to end up.
Matt Striker asked Alberto about Rodriguez’ condition. David Otunga came out, as the legal representative, and said there was no comment, at this time.
Michael Cole talked about how The Rock foiled a robbery in London, while filming Fast and Furious 6. Speaking of The Rock, one of his former co-stars from the Scorpion King, Michael Clarke Duncan, passed away on Monday. The actor suffered a heart attack, several weeks ago, and finally died from the damage to his heart. It is my sincere hope that Mr. Duncan’s rest is a glorious and peaceful one. Thank you for entertaining us all for so many years. Michael Clarke Duncan was only 54 years old.
Jindar Mahal vs Ryback
The Human Wrecking Ball stomped down to the ring and absorbed the love of the fans. Miz said Ryback was intense and a monster. The two locked up and Ryback launched Jindar. The crowd let loose with something that reminded me of the old “Gold-Berg” chant. Ryback went for the Double Clutch but Jindar with a flurry of offense. Jindar with Double Boots, twice. Flying Shoulder Tackle by Jindar, off the ropes.Jindar with punches. Scoop Slam by Ryback into a Back Body Drop. Ryback with a Close Clutch Powerbomb. “Feed Me More” rang out. Meathook Clothesline by Ryback. Running Samoan Drop by Ryback to take the win.
Your Winner: Ryback
Grade: B- (82%)
Cole and Miz talked about the new WWE App. I’m going to get that, once I upgrade my phone.
Josh Mathews tried to talked with A.J. Lee. He asked what Lee was going to do about the falling apart situation on Raw. She barked at Josh to go tell John Cena and Alberto Del Rio that their match was now going to be Falls Count Anywhere.
Daniel Bryan and Kane — Hug It Out Segment.
The fans voted 55% to see the two wrestlers hug it out. Sad. After several false starts, they finally hugged. After the hug, things heated up and they ended up fighting each other in the ring. They wasted the second Hour Turner segment (and over 10 minutes of airtime) for this? Really? The post hug battle was somewhat decent. They should have just let both men fight and forget the whole Touchy Feely crap. Kane put a chair around Daniel Bryan’s head and prepared to launch himself off the top rope. Refs rushed out to stop him. Daniel took the chair and clocked Kane with it. Daniel then took off like his tail was on fire.
Santino Power Walked, backstage. He was set for his US title rematch.
Santino Marella vs Antonio Cesaro
United States Title Match
Aksana was at Antonio’s side. In an insert video, Antonio translated “Success” into five languages. Sntino wit h a Slap and Drop Toe Hold. Santino quickly went for the Cobra but it didn’t strike. Antonio with the Al Snow Trapped Arms Headbutts. Rear Chin Lock by Antonio to keep Santino away from the Cobra sock puppet. Gut Wrench Throw by Antonio. Santino ducked a Short Arm Clothesline but fell to a second one. Antonio missed the third Clothesline. Santino kicked Antonio out of the ring. While trying to put on the Cobra, Antonio hit The Neutralizer (Cradle Styles Clash/Faith Breaker).
Your Winner: Antonio Cesaro
Grade: B- (82%)
Zack Ryder vs Heath Slater
Zack and Heath have been feuding through Twitter. Go Behind by Heath. Heath with a Tackle off the ropes. Universal into a Flapjack by Zack. Miz was harsh on both men, though especially Heath. Heath stomped on Zack. Zack started to punch back gut Heath with the FLying Neckbreaker off a whip to the corner. Repeated Elbow Drops by Heath led to a goofy little dance and a two count. Rear Chin Lock by Heath.
Zack got to his feet but Heath ran Zack into the corner. Zack with a Jumping Knee and Missile Dropkick. Flying Forearm into the corner. Broski Boot. Heath blocked the Rough Ryder and began to punch away. Flying Face plant into the Rough Ryder.
Your Winner: Zack Ryder
Grade: B- (83%)
Vickie Guerrero came out, screeching. Vickie ordered A.J. Lee to get to the ring. She demanded a chair and took a seat. She plopped down in the chair and waited. Raw went to break.
Vickie ws still waiting. A.J. finally came out to confront Vickie. A.J. talked with the Board of Directors. They said her actions were juvenile and unprofessional. A.J. is no longer allowed to touch any WWE Superstar, manager, announcer, etc… She was ordered to apologize. Vickie gbot really catty with A.J. about the apology. She taunted A.J.. Vickie demanded an apology, right now. A.J. looked evilly at Vickie. The crowd called for A.J. to slap Vickie. A.J. apologized to Vickie. Vickie called A.J.’s apology pathetic. She demanded a sincere apology that meant something. A.J. smirked and then gave another apology. Vickie then slapped A.J.. Vickie reminded Vickie that A.J. couldn’t touch her. Vickie went back and slapped her a second time. I have a funny feeling that A.J. is going to call in some help (Kharma?). Vickie cackled all the way to the back and skipped to further mock the G.M.. A.J. had a major meltdown in the center of the ring. The announcers were dead silent as A.J. slapped a chair, over and over, into the ring apron and shrieked in anger. She threw the chair out of the ring and continued to melt down.
Raw looked back at C.M. Punk’s attack on Jerry Lawler. Lawler was having chest issues and was ordered to get medical evaluations. Punk then walked out of the match that he was set to have with Sheamus.
John Cena vs Alberto Del Rio
Falls Count Anywhere Match
Cena was cool with the fans booing him. He was ready to go to work. Del Rio came out in a sharp red Ferrari. David Otunga did a Tout, saying that they were considering legal actions against Sheamus. Otunga would discuss it, further, on Smackdown.
Tilt-a-Whirl Backbreaker by Del Rio for a two count. Del RIo stomped away on Cena. Scoop Slam by Del Rio for a two. Rear Chin Lock by Del Rio. Cena and Del Rio kicked and punched away. Double Clothesline took both men down. Lung Blower by Del Rio for a two. Del Rio went up to the top rope. Cena caught Del Rio, on the way down, with a Dropkick. Cena went Vintage on Del Rio. Five Knuckle Shuffle!. Del Rio held onto the ropes to block the Attitude Adjustment. The two ended up on the floor. Del Rio whipped Cena into the ring steps. Double Stomp on Cena’s chest.
Del Rio threw Cena into the ring barrier and then kicked him. Cena reversed a whip. Del Rio jumped over the steps but Cena still dropped him with a leap off the steps. Cena dismantled the announce table as Del Rio caught his breath. Step Up Enziguri by Del Rio. Two count on the floor. Del RIo with a sharp kick to Cena’s ribs. Del Rio wanted a Suplex but Cena blocked it. Del Rio pushed Cena into the ring post. Del Rio got a steel chair but hit the ring post, not Cena. Cena threw Del Rio over the barricade. Cena then moved the ring steps over next to the announce table. Cena threw Del Rio into the barrier and then lifted Del Rio into a Fireman’s Carry. Cena climbed the steps and went for the Attitude Adjustment. Del Rio blocked it and nailed a Back Drop Suplex that destroyed the announce table. Somehow, Cena kicked out at two.
Del Rio rolled Cena back into the ring. Cena took the house mic and told Cena that he was beneath him. He also said the entire WWE Roster, and Chicago was beneath him. Del Rio threatened to break Cena’s arm. Cena rolled through the Cross Armbreaker into the STF. Del Rio used the microphone to crack Cena in the skull. Del Rio charged Cena and ended up sliding between the ropes. He tweaked his knee on the landing. Del Rio and Cena fought up the ramp. Del RIo with a Suplex on the steel ramp. 2 count. The two fought near Del Rio’s Ferrari. Cena had a impish look in his eyes. He went to throw a big speaker at the car. Del Rio kicked the hamstring.
The fight went to the back. Cena with knees and kicks. Cena pitched a trash can at Del Rio, which missed. Cena threw Del Rio through the interview area. Del Rio with a kick and Headbutt. Del Rio anted the Cross Armbreaker but Cena with the AA on a storage crate. Out of nowhere, Punk nailed Cena with a Thrust Kick. Cena was out. Punk pulled Del Rio over and placed him on top of Cena.
Your Winner: Alberto Del Rio.
Grade: A- (92%)
Punk then laid out Cena with a G-T-S. Punk told Cena “Respect!” Punk then stood next to his car and showed off the WWE title belt. Punk drove off…but it was Paul Heyman who was driving the car!