WWE Monday Night RAW Wrestlers of the Week 11.11.13
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 November 11, 2013
3. John Cena — for single-handedly beating both members of The Real Americans in a 2-on-1 Handicap Match:
With Triple H and Stephanie McMahon not in attendance at this week’s RAW, there was a bit of a power struggle between Brad Maddox, Vickie Guerrero and Kane as to who should be in charge of the show. There was no real resolution in the end, and all three of them took part in making decisions that essentially revolved around putting superstars in handicap matches.
Maddox’ idea was to book World Heavyweight Champion John Cena in a 2-on-1 Handicap Match against both members of The Real Americans, Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro. Recently, Cena has dealt with those two in six-man tag team matches alongside Cody Rhodes and Goldust during his brief mini-feud with Damien Sandow.
After Cesaro put him up top and followed to the top turnbuckle, Cena punched him back down to the mat and caused Cesaro to make a tag into Swagger. Swagger ran in for a belly-to-belly off the top rope, but Cena pushed him back down to the mat as well. Then Cena flew off with a crossbody, rolling through and closelining Cesaro to the floor in the process. Upon turning back to Swagger, Cena tripped him up and applied the STF, which Swagger tapped out to.
Cena’s damaged wing only suffered more punishment at the hands of Alberto Del Rio in a postmatch attack. But the champion received an assist from Big E. Langston before Del Rio could do as much damage as he would have liked.
Cena is going to be hurt some as the elbow continues to heal, but there should be no stopping him as he heads toward the Survivor Series and his World Heavyweight Title defense in the rematch against Del Rio.
2. Alberto Del Rio — for submitting Big E. Langston in a match after Langston stuck his nose in World Heavyweight Championship business:
Alberto Del Rio’s sights are set squarely on earning back the World Heavyweight Championship he lost to the returning John Cena at Hell In A Cell. He will receive his shot at the Survivor Series, and he has tried his best to stay in Cena’s business to gain any advantage he can before the pay-per-view on Nov. 24.
That included an attack on this week’s Monday Night RAW after Cena’s match against both members of The Real Americans. Del Rio did some significant damage to Cena’s arm, but his assault was cut short when Big E. Langston randomly came down for the save. Del Rio asked those in charge this week on RAW to tell Langston to stay out of his business, and they gave him the opportunity to tell him himself in a singles matchup later in the show.
Del Rio was just fine getting his own justice. He met a daunting figure in the much larger Langston, who dished out plenty of punishment to the former titleholder along the way. As an example, when Del Rio made an initial attempt at hitting the cross arm breaker, Langston managed to shove him off, deliver a punch to the gut and come off the ropes with a running splash.
Langston pulled the straps down and picked Del Rio up in hopes of hitting The Big Ending, but Del Rio slid off the shoulder and floated right over with a successful cross arm breaker. Langston held on for a bit, but the tapout was inevitable and Del Rio picked up the submission win.
It’s important for Del Rio to maintain his edge going into the World Heavyweight Title Match at Survivor Series. He will still be the underdog against Cena. But between the champion’s arm injury and the extra momentum Del Rio is gaining, he should remain a worthy competitor at the Survivor Series.
1. Curtis Axel — for defending the Intercontinental Championship against the man who pinned him a week ago, Dolph Ziggler:
When Dolph Ziggler defeated Curtis Axel last week, it unfortunately wasn’t for the Intercontinental Championship. Even a non-title victory can be advantageous, though, as it clearly positioned Ziggler as next in line for another shot at Axel with the belt on the line.
That match came pretty quickly, as it was featured on this week’s edition of RAW. While Ziggler would look to just follow up on his success from a week ago, Axel hoped to reverse fortunes and get a more meaningful victory than his opposition.
Ziggler tried to put the match away with the same move he did last week — the Zig Zag. He leapt onto Axel’s back near the ropes, which were held onto by the champion to prevent him from going down. Axel shrugged off Ziggler, who ran back at him only to be lifted into the air. Ziggler popped back up after hitting the mat face-first, and Axel moved right in for a devastating swinging neckbreaker. That was enough to keep Ziggler down for the three count, keeping the Intercontinental Championship around Axel’s waist.
That was a good rebound victory for Axel, who could have experienced a fast downward spiral without Paul Heyman in his corner. Axel had a good, smart match against good competition and came out on top when it mattered most — with the title on the line. A few more performances like that, and Axel could solidify himself as truly worthy of holdi