Written by: Justin Rozzero
Monday Night Raw 11/12/07
“Survivor Series Kick Off”
Announcers: Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler
– We fade up to a nice little tribute to the Armed Forces as it is Veteran’s Day here in the USA and then we get a cold open with the shocking entrance of Batista. JR and King are surprised to see Big Dave in a Raw ring and pump up his big Cell match with Undertaker on Sunday. Batista grabs the mike and we are off. He says it is good to be back on Raw even though he has grown fond of his home on Smackdown. He lets us know that he was invited to Raw by William Regal to take on some Raw competition. Batista says he looks forward to the competition but tells Regal that he made a huge mistake. He says he is gearing up for Survivor Series, for Hell in the Cell and for the Undertaker. Dave runs down the specs and rules of HITC for us. He is about to say one more thing to the Undertaker but is interrupted by the ominous gong. The lights go down and the man himself, the Undertaker, heads down to the ring. Batista is ready to defend himself as Taker climbs into the ring and slowly takes his coat off. The two men look like they are about to square off when William Regal’s music fires up. He tells Taker and Batista that they are not here to face each other tonight, but rather they will be teaming up to face the finest tag team on Raw.
1) Undertaker & Batista defeat Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch when Undertaker pins Cade with a Tombstone
The bell rings and Taker and Cade start things off. Taker takes it right to Cade in the corner and immediately goes upstairs and nails Old School. Batista tags himself in and buries his shoulder into Cade’s midsection but eats a boot on a charge. Cade is able to grab Batista and throw him shoulder first into the post and then tags in Murdoch. Murdoch hits a boot and gets a 2 count. Cade is tagged back in and gets another near fall off a double team. Batista is able to fend Cade off and Taker tags himself back in. Taker grabs Cade and crushes him with a Chokeslam, but Murdoch interrupts the count. Batista takes Murdoch out and Taker grabs hold of Cade and plants him with the Tombstone for the win. Batista gets in the ring and lays Murdoch out with the Batista Bomb and the two men stare each other down. Grade: 2
– Back from break and we get a Raw Rewind recapping the beautiful Austin/Marella confrontation from last week.
2) Beth Phoenix defeats Maria with a Fisherman’s Buster
The fantastic theme music of the Women’s Champion fires up as we fade back to the arena and Ms. Phoenix heads to the ring, belt in tow. Her opponent tonight is the lovely Maria, who has cleaned up from her beer bath last week. JR sends out his weekly well wishes to Candice Michelle. Beth slugs Maria down to start. Maria puts her boot to Beth’s throat, but she just flings her down into a split position and lands a stiff kick. Maria lands a headscissors kick, but eventually gets caught in a surfboard like submission hold by Beth. Beth scoops her up and puts her down with the Fisherman’s Buster for the quick win. Grade: 1.5
– This show gets even better now as the perfect music of Santino Marella fires up and your hero and mine makes his way to the ring. He grabs a mike and tells the crowd not to worry about Maria as she will be OK. Santino says that last week he was a victim of a brutal beating by Steve Austin. He says the fans liked it when he was sprayed down by “the Steveweiser” but it wasn’t funny. He says that Austin can’t take criticism of his stupid acting and wonders what happened to the First Amendment. He says he wants an apology from Austin and calls him out to the ring. After a minute or so, Austin doesn’t show so Santino says he will turn to Austin’s friend instead. He heads out of the ring and over to the commentary table to confront JR. He says last week he saw that “stupid crooked smile” of JR and got mad, but realized it is always there. He demands an apology and says that his English is not so good, but JR’s is even worse. He tells him to stand up like a man, but Lawler stands up for him instead. Marella tells King to get in the ring and taunts him a bit. Santino tells him if he gets in the ring he can have the first punch. King climbs in and Santino tells him he better knock him out or else he will beat him up. Lawler looks around and then lands a big right hand, sending Marella out of the ring. He yells at the King as he storms up the ramp, being sure to call him “Jerry Stupid Lawler” on the way out.
– We return from break to thank the Hives for providing us our Survivor Series theme song: Tick Tick Boom. We cut backstage and Marella is licking his wounds. The Grish accosts him and Santino says he gave Lawler the first punch and he took advantage of him. He challenges King to a match tonight and says he will not go down easy “like that guy from Taxi” and that he will beat Lawler up. Lawler accepts the challenge and it will be on later tonight. JR now takes to a video package recapping “five weeks of Sweet Chin Music” on Randy Orton. We then head off to the clip from after last week’s Raw, courtesy WWE Mobil, where Regal and Orton decide the stipulations for Survivor Series. As JR and Lawler are breaking down the stipulations, we get another surprise as Matt Hardy’s theme music fires up and the man himself makes his way to the ring to kick off our next match.
3) Matt Hardy, Rey Mysterio & Jeff Hardy defeat Finlay, MVP & Mr. Kennedy when Hardy pins MVP with a Swanton Bomb
JR says tonight is like a WWE All Star game during the entrances, as we head off to break before the match starts up. During the break we get a Survivor Series Classics clip which is a montage of the main event from inaugural event in 1987 featuring NFL Films music which is awesome as always. Back from break and Finlay is making his way into the ring. The bell rings and Matt and Finlay start things off. We get a lockup to start and then men trade shoves and then stare each other down. Finlay grabs a side headlock and lands a stiff clothesline to take Hardy down. He tags in Kennedy who continues to work over Hardy. MVP tags in and begs off, refusing to take on his tag team partner. He tags Kennedy right back in and the two trade fists, but Kennedy eventually regains control. Matt ducks a clothesline and hits a cross body. Matt lands a pair of arm drags on Kennedy, but Finlay charges in and gets hit with an arm drag as well. Kennedy sneaks up from behind and tosses Matt to the floor as we head to a break. We return and Kennedy has a rear chinlock on Matt in the center of the ring. Kennedy scoops him up and goes for the Senton, but Matt hits a botched Side Effect to take him down. Kennedy tags in Finlay but Matt hot tags Rey. Rey gets a quick near fall but misses a springboard cross body. Finlay hits a dropkick to the face for 2. Finlay tags in MVP who works over Rey with kicks and a knee. MVP shoots Rey in and catches him with a big flapjack for 2. MVP locks in a seated abdominal stretch and pounds on Rey’s ribs, but Rey hits a couple knees to MVP’s head. Finlay tags back in and gets a 2 off a cannonball. Finlay hits a backbreaker and then baits the Hardys into the ring. Kennedy is tagged back in and hits a double backbreaker and then turns it into a submission, bending Rey over his knee. Rey knees his way out of it again and tries to make the tag, but Kennedy stops him and tags in MVP. MVP locks in a reverse bear hug on the mat, but Rey fights to his feet and elbows out of it. MVP shoots him in, but Rey is able to flip his way into a DDT. Rey crawls over and hot tags Jeff, who eventually takes MVP down with a clothesline for a 2 count. Jeff hits a drop toehold on Kennedy, sending him neck first on the second rope. Rey knocks MVP next to him and then lands the double 619 and Jeff comes flying in with the Swanton for the win. That was a pretty fun match with the usual hot ending. I must say, Jeff has been providing the best and hottest match endings week to week for a while now. Grade: 2.5
– We see Mr. McMahon walking backstage and then cut to the weekly SAVE_US promo which seems to be moving more rapidly than normal. It finishes with a flurry of “break the walls”, “upon us”, “6 days…23 hours…33 minutes” and “next Monday”.
– We are back from break and the Boss is in the ring to moderate our big face to face confrontation. Shawn Michaels is out first to his usual big pop. Vince interrupts Shawn’s posing and introduces our World Champion, Randy Orton. Vince says there will no physicality tonight and reminds the combatants of Sunday’s stipulations. Orton reviews them as well and Shawn says he understands them. Orton says he sick and tired of hearing people say he got intentionally DQ’d at Cyber Sunday. He says all he did was defend himself against the Superkick. Michaels says Orton got the Superkick banned because he has been feasting on it for the last 5 weeks and that he knew number 6 was coming at Survivor Series. Orton tells him to come off it and that it isn’t about the title to Shawn…it’s about revenge. He says Shawn is a hothead and that his instincts will end with him using the Superkick and losing the match. Shawn says he has heard people say for years that if “Michaels can hit the kick, he can beat anybody.” He wonders if that is a compliment or criticism as he never saw himself as a one hit wonder. He says maybe everything he accomplished over 20 years was a fluke or just luck. He says he may just walk into Survivor Series and win the Championship with a wrestling move…or a submission hold. He says he may not be all that technically sound. He tells Randy to ask himself how it will feel to be the only man in history to lose the Title to Shawn Michaels when he didn’t even have the option to use Sweet Chin Music. He says he doesn’t need it, as all he needs is the memory of Orton trying to end his career six months ago, the memory of his wife and kids crying and the memory of Orton trying to end his livelihood. The crowd breaks into a big “HBK” chant. Orton tells Shawn to tell his wife and children to expect the same feelings on Sunday. Vince sneaks up behind Shawn, who turns to confront him, but Orton comes up behind him. Shawn turns and shoves him off and goes for the Superkick but Orton fals before he could hit it. Shawn then goes to kick Vince, but Orton hits him with a low blow and then beats him down. Michaels is trying to get up and Orton lines up the Career Killer kick, but Vince stops him and tells him to wait till Sunday. Orton relents and hits the RKO instead. Orton taunts Shawn with the belt as the crowd fires up the “HBK” chant again.
4) Mickie James, Michelle McCool & Kelly defeat Melina, Layla & Jillian Hall when Mickie pins Layla with a spin kick
Melina and Michelle kick things off and Melina goes right to a top wristlock. Michelle reverses things and tags in Kelly, who lands an axehandle from the middle rope. Melina takes her down and drags her by her hair to the corner and tags in Jillian. Jillian hits a backbreaker and tries to control Kelly, but she shoves her off and tags in Mickie. Mickie comes in with a big headscissors take down and then goes to the corner and snaps Melina’s neck over the top rope. She gets a neckbreaker and goes for a pin but it is broken up by Layla and all 6 women are now in the ring. Mickie bends Layla back and kisses her and then hits a spinning kick for the win. Despite the kiss, this match was quite the disjointed mess and may not bode well for Sunday. Grade: .5
– As we head off to break, the King’s music fired up and he heads off to the ring.
– Back from break and we get another Survivor Series Classics moment and it is a look back at the tournament finals between Rock and Mankind in 1998. We then get a quick promo look at Snitsky, who discusses pain and how he finds it satisfying.
5) Jerry Lawler defeats Santino Marella with an inside cradle
Marella heads to the ring and I promise the WWE that if they ever sold replica Marella ring jackets I would buy one immediately. Lockup to start as the King has to wrestle in his jeans since this ironically appears to be the one time he doesn’t have his tights with him. Lawler lands some punches to Santino’s body, but ducks on a charge and eats a boot. Santino stomps on Lawler a bit and then goes to a reverse chinlock. Marella hits a snap mare but misses a kneedrop and King is up. He works Marella’s thigh and then lands some rights in the corner. He whips Santino to the buckle, but is hit with a boot on the charge. Marella tells JR to watch as he picks the King up, but Lawler catches him with an inside cradle for the upset win. King slides out of the ring and goes right back to commentary and starts talking about the Diva match at the PPV which was pretty funny. Grade: .5
– We are back from break and looking at the outside of the arena but JR is cut off mid sentence by the same SAVE_US promo from earlier. King says he has cracked the code and determined it says “next Monday” but JR says he isn’t sure about that. We then take a look at Commissioner Regal training Hornswoggle earlier today. Regal is in the ring with Lillian in the empty arena. Regal talks about what is going on and then has Lillian introduce Little Mac, and he emerges from under the ring. He then tells Lillian to announce his opponent, and she announces the Great Khali, but out walks Coach dressed like him. He is flanked by a rotund gentleman playing the role of Mr. Singh. Coach gets in the ring and Regal makes him enter over the top rope like Khali does. Coach takes the wig off and says he won’t wear it, but Regal tells him to put the bloody wig on. Coach picks it up and puts it back on. Regal tells Singh he looks pale and asks if he has been ill. Singh grabs the mike and rambles in a mildly offensive Indian accent about what Khali will do at the PPV. The ref gives the instructions and Regal reminds Coach that this is a training session and tells Coach he is basically a worthless dummy here today and that he better not hurt Hornswoggle. Little Mac charges and kicks Coach in the shins a bunch of times as Regal calls him a girl. Coach turns and yells at Regal, but William shoves him backwards over a kneeling Hornswoggle. He pulls Coach’s pants down, trips him and then hits the Frog Splash for the win. Hornswoggle grabs the wig, puts his hat on Coach and dances his way up the ramp. We are back in the arena and JR and King run down the PPV card. We then head backstage and the Grish is with the Game. Hunter says that Survivor Series’ name says it all: who will survive. He says he will be the last man standing and that Umaga will be lucky to make it to Sunday. He says he doesn’t care if he has to run through the whole team to get to him and that he will finally finish him off like he should have 3 months ago. He says he will finish the saga tonight.
– Back from break and we get another Survivor Series Classics segment. This one features the classic matchup between the King’s Court and Clowns R’ Us at the 1994 Survivor Series. It was about just as funny in clip form as it was 13 years ago.
6) Triple H defeats Umaga by disqualification in a Lumberjack match when Finlay interferes
Hunter heads out with his lumberjacks in tow. The men backing him here are also the ones that will be on his team Sunday: Kane, Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy and Rey Mysterio. Umaga heads down with his lumberjacks flanking him: Mr. Kennedy, Finlay, MVP, Big Daddy V and Matt Striker. The bell rings and Umaga takes immediate control as Hunter was distracted by the lumberjacks. Umaga tosses Triple H to the floor, but he smacks Striker away and slides back in. Hunter lands a kick to the gut and slugs away at Umaga. Umaga charges, but Hunter ducks and pulls down the top rope, sending him to the floor. Umaga’s teammates stand around him, but Hunter comes outside and leaps into all of them, knocking them all down. The two get back in the ring and Hunter goes for a Pedigree, but Umaga backdrops him to the floor. The lumberjacks face off over him as we head off to our last break of the night. When we return, Umaga and Triple H are trading blows in the center of the ring. Hunter lands an elbow and then a boot on two Umaga charges. Umaga is able to catch Hunter and tosses him down with a big swinging slam. Umaga drags him over and hits a pair of springboard splashes on Hunter stomach. Umaga pounds on Hunter but the referee pulls him away, which allows Finlay to land a cheap shot. Umaga hits a big splash for 2 and then continues to stomp on Triple H. Triple H goes for a slam, but Umaga shifts the weight and crashes down on top of him. Umaga locks in a nerve hold as the crowd starts to stir a bit. Hunter battles out of it, but Umaga takes him down with a headbutt. Umaga goes back to the nerve hold as JR and Lawler pump up Sunday’s PPV. Hunter knees his way out of it, but Umaga lands an uppercut to remain in control. The ref is distracted by Umaga allowing Kennedy to choke out Trips in the corner. Umaga charges but Hunter ducks. Umaga charges again, but Hunter ducks again and Umaga hits the post. Hunter lands a DDT for a near fall. Hunter lands a face buster and goes for the Pedigree, but Umaga fights out and hits a Samoan Drop. Umaga goes fro the spike, but Hunter avoids it and lands a Spinebuster. Finlay then storms the ring and attacks Hunter to draw the DQ. Rey jumps in and attacks Finlay and then all hell breaks loose as everyone storms the ring. We only get to see a minute or so and then fade out to end the show. This was a decent enough match but was kind of flat and had barely any interaction from the Lumberjacks. Grade: 2
I was looking forward to the classic pre-Survivor Series brawl to end the show but we didn’t really get to see much of it as they were clearly running long. There was nothing really fantastic this week and we didn’t see anything that will mean much long term, but it was a very successful go home episode. They hard sold Survivor Series all night and gave a lot of focus to all the matches. It was cool seeing some Smackdown competitors out there, especially Taker and Batista in the opener. The Santino/Lawler confrontation was way better than the match, but that is to be expected. The six man was the match of the night but wasn’t up to the recent standards of the mid-show match. I loved the Orton/Michaels face to face as HBK continues to bring the goods with his promos and really make you feel his anger for Orton and his desperation to be the man one more time. While the in ring action may have been lacking, Raw has definitely been delivering great character and angle development and that continued tonight. The crowd was pretty hot throughout but sort of died off in the second hour and seemed especially flat in the Main Event. I will also say that JR and King were pretty good tonight and JR seemed much more focused on calling the matches which was nice. Overall, they succeeded in providing a good sell for Sunday so to me that means they did their job. Grade: B
MVP: Shawn Michaels
Runner Up: Beth Phoenix
Non MVP: Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch
Runner Up: Triple H & Umaga