WWE Monday Night RAW Wrestlers of the Week 8.5.13
By Neil Borenstein
Each week here at 1wrestling.com, I will select three of the top wrestlers from the Monday Night RAW brand and present them to you in inverse order as the show’s Wrestlers of the Week. In choosing the brand’s top three superstars, performances from that week’s RAW and any relevant preceding programming will be taken into consideration. This is a RAW exclusive. However, SmackDown brand wrestlers will be eligible if they appear with any significance on that week’s RAW broadcast.
Monday Night RAW Wrestlers of the Week for August 5, 2013
3. Rob Van Dam – for using Alberto Del Rio’s cheating tactics against him to score a non-title victory over the World Heavyweight Champion:
Rob Van Dam had the opportunity on Smackdown to earn a World Heavyweight Championship Match when he was placed in a No. 1 Contender triple threat match against Christian and Randy Orton. He fell short after eating an RKO from Randy Orton, who was subsequently pinned by Christian. But Van Dam gave it a good effort and still sought some redemption over Del Rio for losing a match against him in underhanded fashion a few weeks ago on Smackdown.
Van Dam received a non-title, one-on-one match against Del Rio on this Monday night’s RAW, which also marked the RAW return for Del Rio’s personal ring announcer, Ricardo Rodriguez. While Del Rio has proven that he’s more than capable of cheating his way to victory on his own, having a little help never hurts … except when it backfires.
Late in the contest and behind the back of the referee, Rodriguez set up the bucket that he carries around in between the top and middle turnbuckle. The intention was for Del Rio to send Van Dam into it, and thus cause another non-kosher victory to go the heavyweight champion’s way. RVD reversed a whip, though, and Del Rio went crashing into the bucket instead. Van Dam took advantage with a rollup and scored the three-count, earning a revenge win over Del Rio.
Rodriguez paid for his incompetence after the match when Del Rio took the loss out on him. As for RVD, he can claim to own a win over the World Heavyweight Champion and possibly keep himself in line for a title shot somewhere down the line after Christian gets his opportunity at SummerSlam.
2. Big E. Langston – for defeating Dolph Ziggler with a little unintended interference from Kaitlyn:
Dolph Ziggler gets over those who don’t work toward his benefit very quickly. So, when it came to be that AJ Lee was more of a liability than an aid — costing him his match for the World Heavyweight Championship at Money in the Bank, he dumped her rather unceremoniously. AJ doesn’t take a shine to those who dismiss her, and she kept Big E. Langston on her team to make Ziggler realize that dumping her was a terrible mistake.
When Ziggler and Langston squared off last week on RAW, the match ended in a disqualification due to AJ attacking Ziggler mid-match. He managed to escape the ring losing just a few strands of hair in the process, and Langston was not happy with the way the bout ended. Nor was he thrilled with getting a Zig Zag when Ziggler ran back into the ring.
These two would face each other again this week on RAW, and the ending of the match was once again influenced by other parties.
When Ziggler and Langston were both down and out, Kaitlyn appeared in the arena to try and get some revenge over AJ, who has been a thorn in her side for some time now and played a role in costing her an earlier match against Layla. Kaitlyn attacked the Divas Champion, and their squabble moved inside the ring.
Ziggler tried to break the two Divas up, but that only distracted him so that Langston could move right in for a healthy closeline. Kaitlyn grew a concerned look on her face as that was obviously not the intention of her ambushing AJ, but the straps came down on Langston and he lifted Ziggler up for the Big Ending. Langston covered up and got the pinfall over the former heavyweight champion.
Langston smack talked Ziggler a bit after the match and AJ smiled toward Kaitlyn, who was still concerned over what just happened. It will be interesting to see if anything develops between Ziggler and Kaitlyn, as it’s clear that this is not over between any of these four individuals.
1. Kofi Kingston – for a successful return to RAW with a win over Fandango:
It has been about two months since Kofi Kingston was taken out of commission by Ryback, who sent him crashing through three tables as a means of sending a message to then-rival John Cena on an episode of Smackdown. Kingston returned this week with no loss of enthusiasm and the yearning to get right back on track in the WWE when he faced Fandango.
While donning some new spiffy attire, Kingston got right back on the horse while receiving a good fight back from his opponent. When it looked like trouble for Fandango after getting nailed with a Boom Drop, he avoided a Trouble in Paradise by rolling to the apron. After the referee made a separation and Kingston walked back toward Fandango, he caught a kick to the head and got covered up by Fandango, who put his legs on the ropes for added leverage.
Kingston still managed to kick out at two despite Fandango’s cheating ways. Fandango then went up top, but he jumped back down to the mat when he realized Kingston was coming in. As Fandango landed and turned around, Kingston got himself up top and leapt off with a crossbody for a two count.
When the two superstars got up, Fandango was able to duck a Trouble in Paradise from Kingston. A few reversals later in the sequence, however, saw Fandango get drilled with one anyway, and Kingston covered up to collect the three count.
That was by no means an easy win for Kingston, and it helps him get right back in the swing of things in the WWE.