Written By: Justin Rozzero
Monday Night Raw
October 22, 2007
Announcers: Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler
– We fade up to a cold open with Mr. Kennedy…Kennedy in the middle of the ring. JR welcomes us to Omaha as the music fades and the crowd showers Kennedy with boos. Kennedy lets the crowd know that they have the chance to make history by deciding the number 1 contender. He compares Jeff Hardy to Hillary Clinton and hits his punch line by saying that neither has testicles, so they can’t the job done. He then turns to Shawn Michaels, which gets a big pop, and compares him to Rudy Giuliani, saying they have impressive resumes but both live in the past. Kennedy asks what Shawn has done lately and then runs down his own list of accomplishments in the last year. Kennedy polishes off his promo by quoting his namesake, John F., asking the crowd “ask not what Mr. Kennedy can do for you, but what you can do for Mr. Kennedy.” He says if he is elected, he will win and become World Champion. We are interrupted by Jeff Hardy who is amongst the crowd and is welcomed with a good sized pop. Hardy tells Kennedy that his approval rating sucks, but Kennedy tells him not to get into a debate. He asks if Jeff really wants to stand out there “eating their stale popcorn, kissing their ugly babies and begging for their votes.” Hardy rips on Kennedy for failing to pass himself off as a McMahon and for failing at kicking Jeff’s ass last week. He tells him he will fail in the voting as well. Kennedy drops his mike and starts to walk out, but Jeff stops him and says he is going to kick his ass right now. Hardy in the ring and the two battle, but Orton comes in to help Kennedy and the two start pummeling Jeff. Michaels circa 1997 is out and all over Orton like a madman. He chases the Champ off and Hardy sends Kennedy to the floor with a clothesline. Kennedy backs up the ramp as Hardy’s music plays and JR and the King run down tonight’s action. That was a pretty hot opening segment that set the stage nicely for Sunday.
– Back from break and we do a quick recap of our opening segment.
1) Brian Kendrick, Paul London & Mickie James defeat Lance Cade, Trevor Murdoch & Melina when Paul London pins Trevor Murdoch with a Moonsault Press
We have an interesting mix of talent here and hopefully we get ample time for them to perform. London and Cade start off, and London takes control with a side headlock and turnbuckle assisted takeover. Cade lands a shoulderblock and sends London to the corner. London floats over and hits a cross body for a 2. London with a front facelock and tags Kendrick in who gets a near fall with a sunset flip. An arm wringer by Kendrick and then gets another quick tag to London, who hits an axehandle to Cade’s arm. Quick tag Kendrick and they repeat the same double team. Now Mickie and Melina get tagged in and Melina with the early advantage, but Mickie comes back with a pair of kicks. Melina tags in Murdoch, and Kendrick is tagged in by Mickie. Trevor hits a jawbreaker and quick tag to Cade who hits a neckbreaker and gets a 2 count. The tag champs work over Kendrick some more as Lawler references Londrick’s brief South African title reign. Kendrick hits a couple of shots and is able to hot tag London and he is all over Murdoch. Spinning heel kick gets 2, but Cade breaks it up. Melina charges in, but Mickie hits a Thesz Press and tosses Melina from the ring. Cade goes for a huge clothesline on London, who moved out of the way, but Mickie was right behind him. Murdoch pushed Mickie out of the way to save her, and Cade drilled him by accident and London nails a moonsault press for the win in a fun and fast paced match. Grade: 2.5
– We get clips of the latest Diva Search Challenge which sort of disturbing and then JR and Lawler tease the Diva Search finals happening later tonight.
– We are back with big thanks to Velvet Revolver for providing us the theme for the Diva Search. Now we go backstage where HBK and Hardy chat a bit about all things involving Randy Orton. Hardy says he is about first impressions, but Michaels says he is out for revenge on Orton for nearly ending his career. Hardy plays devil’s advocate about how the crowd will vote and tells Michaels he wants his opportunity now. Hardy tells Michaels he will do exactly what Shawn would do when HBK asks if he has his back tonight. We cut to Cody Rhodes reading the new WWE magazine, but Sisqo Benjamin and Charlie Haas happen upon him and rag on him for jobbing to Bob Holly a few times. Shelton tells Cody he won’t get beaten by Holly tonight, but he does have to deal with him. Cody says the difference between Hardcore and Shelton is that Holly doesn’t look like a tool and that Cody actually respects him. Shelton tells Cody he will beat him down tonight and then he can dye his hair blonde too and be a smaller, thinner less talented version of Big Dust. Now we head to the GM office and Coach is requesting a match with Hornswoggle. Regal lets us know that Vince is out of the country tonight and that he would not be happy knowing Coach is requesting this. Coach says Vince is embarrassed by his son and says that by giving him a match, the whole family would be happy. Regal relents and makes the match for later tonight. Coach backtracks and says he meant Hornswoggle should face Umaga, not him. Regal contemplates and walks off.
2) Cody Rhodes defeats Shelton Benjamin with a roll up
Why is Cody Rhodes from Charlotte, NC? Maybe we should have a Ric Flair bastard son storyline…hmmm. We get a recap of last week’s matchup where Cody lost again to Hardcore. Shelton attacks with a kick to the gut and then shoves Cody to the corner and lands kicks to the quad. Take down and Shelton works on the leg as Haas roots him on. Cody tries to battle back, but Shelton lands a shinbreaker to take him back down. Rhodes whips Shelton back in, but puts his head down and catches a boot. He battles back again and lands a nice bulldog for a two count. Shelton with a whip and Haas distracts Cody. Shelton with a roll up, but Cody reverses it for the win. After the bell, Haas gets in the ring and the two beat Rhodes down before Holly makes the save and runs TWGTT from the ring. If this is going to be a permanent team, Holly needs some updated tights. Grade: 1
3) D.H. Smith defeats Carlito with a Running Powerslam
We come back from break and young Harry Smith is in the ring where he announces that he is Davey Boy Smith’s son and dedicates the match to him. Apparently Harry now goes by “D.H.” according to JR. Harry in control early, getting a couple of near falls with some basic offense. Nice belly to belly gets another 2 for Smith. Carlito battles back and hits a springboard dropkick and gets a one count. Carlito works Smith over in the corner and gets a 2 off a bodyslam. Lawler and JR talk about the confrontation between the two on Heat last week while Carlito works over Harry with a submission hold. Carlito takes Smith down with a clothesline and gets another 2 count. Side headlock by Carlito, but Harry pushes him into the corner and lands a European uppercut and a pair of dropkicks. Smith gets a bridging Northern Lights Suplex for 2. Carlito lands a springboard elbowdrop, but can’t keep Smith down. Harry sends Carlito to the corner, but Carlito floats over. Smith catches him and lands a huge Powerslam for the win. Nice debut for Harry and I am overjoyed to hear “Rule Britannia” again and see Harry finally make it to the big time. From all accounts, the kid definitely deserves it and he has the look of a big time star. Grade: 2
– Backstage, Beth and Candice are staring each other down and Beth says she will make Candice get on her knees and worship the Glamazon tonight. Candice disagrees and says she will take the belt back and that no one makes her get on her knees.
– Back from break and we take a look at the “Misadventures of Coach and Hornswoggle” from last week.
4) Umaga and Hornswoggle go to a No Contest when Triple H interferes
Umaga and Coach head to the ring to prepare for the slaughter that is sure to come. Lillian looks very distraught having to introduce poor McMahon, Jr. Hornswoggle pops out from under the ring and looks pretty upset. The Little Bastard very slowly climbs the steps and starts to get into the ring as Coach is screaming at him the whole time. Hornswoggle changes his mind and bolts to the backstage area and then we hear the all too familiar strains of Motorhead’s “The Game” as the true McMahon heir makes his way to the ring. Trips climbs to the apron and into the ring and the two start going at it. Umaga shoves the ref down, but Trips dives at Umaga and the two roll around until they are broken up by a bunch of refs. Umaga charges again and the two battle some more. Hunter tosses Umaga outside, but gets dragged out after him and the two brawl on the floor as more officials pour out. Trips grabs a chair, but Umaga nails him before he can hit him. Triple H then goes to the announce table and flies off on top of Umaga and all the officials. The brawl continues and the crowd is pretty hot for it, popping for every shot Hunter lands. The officials finally separate the two, but Trips breaks loose again and goes after the big Samoan. They are finally pulled apart and we go to break. That was a fantastic and really chaotic segment that got the crowd all fired up. Both men looked good and that did more for their Cyber Sunday match than anything else so far. Grade: N/A
– We are back from commercial and get a recap of the big brawl from last segment. We cut backstage and Umaga is freaking out and destroying everything around him while being surrounded by referees and agents. King segues us to Mr. Grish, who is here to introduce us to the Diva Search finalists. Grish runs down all the intense competitions we have been “watching” on WWE.com and then introduces the finalists: Brooke, Eve and Lena. Eve danced for the Clippers, so that sure doesn’t bode well for her. Grish lets us know that one Diva will be voted off tonight and the crowd seems to think it will be none of them. Grish breaks the news that Lena has been eliminated. I thought she was the hottest of the three, but maybe she sucked at all the big competitions on the beach. Next week we will find out the winner, but right now each Diva gets 30 seconds to campaign. Brooke barely gets through 25 seconds without running out of things to say, so that is not a good sign. Eve definitely is a better speaker with better presence and manages to fill the 30 seconds coherently. It will be a tight race to see who takes the crown for sure. We head backstage where we get a confrontation between Kennedy and Orton; with Orton telling Kennedy he has his back because they are partners. He then tells Kennedy that no one likes him, so he definitely will not win the vote. Orton tells Kennedy they should work together and weaken Hardy and HBK. Orton gives Kennedy credit for helping him take out Cena and Kennedy thanks him for saying it. Kennedy warns Randy that he may need to make a statement after they win the match.
5) Ron Simmons defeats Santino Marella by DQ after Marella lands a low blow
Santino is out with Maria, and is there a greater sound coming back from break than the opening strains of Santino’s music? I think not. Santino grabs the stick and discusses the WWE Magazine Anniversary issue, listing everyone who is mentioned inside the magazine, such as “The Rock, Undertaker, The Bret Hart, Stacey Kiebler, Maria, Andre the French Giant and Jillian Garcia.” Santino says Austin is mentioned 283 times, but he is not mentioned at all. He claims that even Mantaur is mentioned. As he instructs Maria to turn to the Mantaur page, we get the newest cryptic “SAVE_US” video on the Titantron. Lawler quips that he hopes it is not about Mantaur as the crowd chants for Jericho. Marella lands a beautiful “holy pasta fagioli” line and digs at Austin for being afraid and hiding at home behind his director. He lets us know that he will open a “can of the ass whip and rub it on Austin’s big fat head” if he ever shows up, “and thats the bottom lines”. On the heels of that dominance, Ron Simmons makes his away out to ruin all the fun as Santino continues to rule all of the Raw. Simmons in control early land basic strikes on Santino, but Santino eventually takes over and beats on Simmons, getting a near fall. Santino with a reverse chinlock, but Simmons is up and landing more body shots on Santino. Marella kicks him low and draws the lame DQ. Marella and Maria head back and Simmons writhes in the ring. Grade: .5
– Backstage and the Grish is with Triple H. Hunter says he doesn’t care how the fans vote but lets us know he saw doubt in Umaga’s eyes for the first time. He tells Umaga that he will fall before the King of Kings and that it is time to play the game.
6) Beth Phoenix defeats Candice Michelle 2 falls to 0 in a Best 2 out of 3 Falls match
1st fall: Beth Phoenix pins Candice Michelle with a Choke Slam
2nd fall: Beth phoenix pins Candice Michelle after Candice fell from the top rope
Candice is out first for this big Championship rematch, but can she wrest the title back from the Glamazon? Beth is out to some fantastic new entrance music that is reminiscent of Jeff Jarrett’s briefly used Aztec Warrior theme from 1998. The bell rings and we are off as the two ladies lock up. Beth takes control early, pounding Candice on the back and then in the chest. Candice tries a headscissors takedown off a float over, but Beth sends her to the apron. Candice lands a shoulderblock low and then grabs Beth’s arm and goes up top and lands a Huracarrana for a near fall. However, Beth impressively picks Candice up from the mat by her throat and plants her hard with a two handed choke slam for the pin and first fall. We head to break as we prepare for the second fall. Back from break and Beth is going for a Boston Crab. We take a quick look at action during the break, which Phoenix dominated with her power. Beth has now locked in a WCW-era Walls of Jericho which is nice to see. Candice fights her way out of it, but Beth kicks her hard back to the mat. Candice is up and on fire, landing a dropkick and clothesline for 2. Candice with a cradle for 2, but Beth powers out. Candice is throwing everything at Beth, but the Glamazon will not stay down. Michelle up top, but Beth shakes the ropes and Candice falls hard from the top, slamming the side her head on the mat and looking like she is dead. Beth drags her motionless body into the center of the ring and picks up the win. Beth leaves with the belt as Candice has woken up and seems to be coming around. She falls back to the mat as JR and King slip into their serious voices for a few seconds. Candice did land really hard so she may have been legit knocked silly, but they are doing the stretcher job on TV so it was more than likely a work. Either way, it was an impressive bump by Candice. Grade: 2
– Back from break and JR and King run down the Cyber Sunday card for us and then we head to the ring for our Main Event.
7) Shawn Michaels & Jeff Hardy vs. Randy Orton & Mr. Kennedy
Michaels and his throwback beard are out to the ring first, followed by Jeff Hardy who emerges to a good sized pop, although a big smaller than usual. JR inquires how HBK and Hardy can possibly co-exist as Kennedy makes his way to the ring, followed by our Champion, Randy Orton. Michaels and Kennedy start off with a collar and elbow and Kennedy powers HBK to the corner and unloads. HBK turns it around and lands his chops on Kennedy’s chest. Shawn hits a snap mare and a boot to the face and follows up with a tag to Hardy. Jeff takes Kennedy down and then hits an elbow from the second rope for a 1 count. Jeff whips Kennedy to the corner and goes for a flying charge, but Kennedy moves and Hardy crashes. Orton is tagged in and pounds on Jeff in the corner. Jeff blocks a left hand and lands a few punches but is caught with a clothesline for a 2 count. Kennedy back in, but Jeff is able to escape him and tag in Michaels, who lands an inverted atomic drop and scoop slam. Michaels tries to go up top, but Orton grabs him which allows Kennedy to take control of the match. Tag to Orton who lands some shots to Shawn’s head. Shawn back up and the two trade shots, but Orton is able to whip Shawn to the corner hard. Kennedy is tagged in and goes for the cover, but only gets 2. Kennedy locks in a seated Abdominal Stretch as Orton cheers him on. Shawn fights his way up, but Kennedy stops him and drills him with two backbreakers and gets a near fall. Orton tags in and stomps on Shawn’s knee and then eventually works his way around, Ronnie Garvin style. Shawn pops up and pushes Orton to the corner, but Kennedy comes in and knees him in the lower back. Kennedy gets a two after some rapid punches and then tags Orton back in, who locks in a reverse chinlock/body scissors combination. Michaels battles back again, but Orton catches his leg. HBK drills an Enziguri and gets the hot tag to Hardy. Kennedy in, but Hardy is on fire and all over him with a dive, mule kick and a sick springboard kick to Kennedy’s face. Michaels sends Orton to the floor and follows up with a Plancha. Hardy nails a Whisper in the Wind and is off the hook as he heads up top. Kennedy catches him and heads up too, but hardy shoves him down and lands a MAN sized Swanton for the huge win. Orton sneaks up behind Hardy, but Shawn comes out of nowhere with the Superkick, putting Randy down. Man that was a really good TV match. It was non-stop and had a great heat segment in the middle. Jeff was really on fire the whole time and the springboard kick and Swanton were executed perfectly. Grade: 3
Well, I don’t really have any complaints about tonight’s show. We got a lot of in ring action, an excellent brawl, a nice surprise debut and really good build up for Cyber Sunday. Plus, we must mention the awesomeness that is Santino Marella as he continues to call out Austin left and right, which is kind of reminiscent of Austin doing the same to Bret Hart in the fall of 1996. I was excited to see Harry Smith debut on the big stage and he definitely made a good impression and has the look of a star. The opener and Main Event were good TV matches and the Women’s match was solid as well, including the sick Candice bump. The Triple H/Umaga brawl was rock solid and the crowd stayed hot all night. We got lots of good progression and build on this go home episode. Final Grade: B+
MVP: Tie: Santino Marella & Harry Smith
Runner Up: Jeff Hardy, Shawn Michaels, Randy Orton & Mr. Kennedy
Non MVP: Diva Search
Runner Up: World’s Greatest Tag Team