August 5, 2008
Raw: Rivalry grows between new tag champs
By DALE PLUMMER -- SLAM! Wrestling
This is it, the first night of the Mike Adamle Era. Hopefully he can act better than he can call a match. Michael Cole and The King are at ringside to call the action, and with The Grish now calling ECW, who will step into his shoes as the backstage reporter as RAW comes to us for the University of Tennessee in Knoxville?
The new General Manager starts the show off with a speech from atop the stage. Adamle says there once a man who wasnít very good a his job, and that man was president Ronald Reagan. He says Reagan started off as a bad B-Movie actor, even starring in a movie with a monkey, but then became one of the greatest presidents ever. Adamle says everyone makes mistakes, and he admits he wasnít the best ECW announcer, but it is important to grow from those mistakes. Adamle says anything can happen, and thatís why he made Michael Cole wrestle last week. Adamle asks the crowd if they want to see one championship match, how about two, guess what there are three titles on the line tonight. The World Tag Team champions will take on Batista and John Cena.
JBL interrupts the new GM to congratulate him. JBL tries to warm up to Adamle. Bradshaw then shows off his wife on the cover of Fortune magazine. JBL calls Adamle a born winner and everything he touches turns to gold. Bradshaw wants Adamle to put him in a World Heavyweight Title match at SummerSlam. Chris Jericho runs out before Adamle can say anything. Jericho also wants a piece of CM Punk. JBL says Jericho isnít in his league. Jericho talks about his beating of HBK, and Jericho says he is in a league of his own. Jericho and Bradshaw squabble, and Adamle shuts them up. Adamle says he will take the right approach here and do something new. Jericho and JBL will take on CM Punk, tonight, but whoever pins Punk gets the title shot, and if Punk wins, neither man gets a match.
Match #1 - Kofi Kingston vs. Paul Burchill w/ Katie Lea - Intercontinental Title Match
Burchill uses a single leg takedown, and then slaps on an arm bar. Kingston is slammed to the mat, but recovers to hit a flying elbow. Kingston kicks out Paulís legs, but is distracted by Katie Lea and Burchill takes advantage. Burchill hits a neckbreaker and gets a near fall. Kingston hits an armdrag and then a drop kick. Kofi follows with a lateral press out of turnbuckle, but cannot hook the leg to get a three count. Kofi answers with a double leg drop and the hits the Trouble in Paradise and covers for the win.
Winner via pinfall: Kofi Kingston
After the bell, Katie runs in to check on her brother and then gets in Kofiís face. Paul goes for the cheap shot, but Kofi tosses him from the ring. Burchill tries to pull Kofi out of the ring, but Kofi kicks him in the face and Paul runs to the back.
Match #2 - Mickie James vs. Katie Lea Burchill - Womenís Title Match
Mickie kicks Katie after knocking her down. Mickie follows with a dropkick and then a Thesz press off the apron onto the floor. Back in the ring, Katie hits a modified neckbreaker onto the middle rope. Katie covers, but the champ kicks out. Katie kicks Mickie in the back of the head, and then locks in a bow and arrow hold. Mickie counters into a pin, but cannot get the three. Mickie hits a head scissors and then knocks Katie down with an elbow and then a reverse bulldog. Mickie hits a neckbreaker for a two count. Katie hits a northern lights suplex and bridges for two. Mickie counters a neckbreaker into the implant DDT. James covers for the win.
Winner via pinfall: Mickie James
After the bell, Beth Phoenix attacks the champ. James fights back with dropkick to the knee, but the runs right into the sit down gourd buster. Santino comes out to cheer his, um, woman? Beth gooses Marella, and he gives her a quick pat on the rear. Beth doesnít seem to appreciate it.
John Cena is talking with his boys, Cryme Tyme, in the back.
Mike Adamle is on the phone with Steph McMahon thanking her for the opportunity. Adamle turn to find Santino and Beth in his office. Marella says he thinks they both should have title matches at SummerSlam. Adamle agrees, but there is only room for one more title match, so the decision is up to them. Santino and Beth canít decide, so Adamle books a winner take all inter-gender match against IC title champion Kofi Kingston and Womenís champ Mickie James.
Hey, the Grish hasnít been replaced. He has to be the hardest working announcer in WWE now. The Grish wants Batista's thoughts, and the Animal tells Cena to stay out of his way.
We come back to find Layla dancing in the ring. We see a clip from WWE.com of Jamie Noble getting shot down by Layla. I guess she doesnít like The Waffle House. Layla says she doesnít associate with losers. Back in the ring, William Regal cuts off the dancing. Regal, with microphone in hand, wants to remind everyone of who he is. Regal announces that he is still our King. Jamie Noble interrupts the speech, and attacks Regal. Both men exchange haymakers until WWE officials can separate the two.
CM Punk walks through the back.
Match #3 - JBL and Chris Jericho vs. CM Punk
Adamle shows up on the Titantron and mentions that this match has a ten minute time limit. If there is no winner, the match at SummerSlam will be a triple threat. JBL and Jericho argue, so Punk charges head long into both men. Punk gets double teamed. JBL dupes Jericho and Y2J is tossed over the ropes. JBL hits a fall away slam, but only gets a two count. Bradshaw climbs out of the ring to face Jericho, but gets himself slammed into the ring steps. Jericho rolls into the ring, and hits a back suplex. Jericho drops an elbow into the gut, but only gets two. Jericho locks in a sleeper, as the fans try to rally Punk. The champ breaks free, but runs into a high knee. Jericho drops a fist from the middle rope. Jericho sets Punk up with a scoop slam, but Punk cuts Jericho off on the turnbuckle. Jericho fights off the champ, and nails him with a flying elbow. Jericho gets a two count. Y2J locks in an abdominal stretch. Punk counters with a hip toss. JBL rolls back in the ring, and hits a clothesline. Jericho breaks the pin. JBL and Jericho come to blows. Jericho runs into a big boot in the corner, and JBL goes after Punk, slams him into the announce table and tosses him back in the ring. Jericho hits a lionsault, but Bradshaw breaks the pinfall. Y2J and JBL brawl on the outside, before rolling back into the ring. Punk takes out JBL and then blocks a bulldog from Jericho. Punk hits a spinning heel kick on Jericho and then a knee in the face to JBL. Bradshaw takes out Jericho with a shoulderblock. Punk hits Bradshaw with the GTS, but Jericho breaks up the pin. Punk scoop slams Jericho and pins him, but Y2J kicks out. Jericho misses a dropkick, and Punk catapults Jericho into JBL. Jericho rakes the eyes to avoid the GTS, and then counters into the Walls of Jericho. Punk is stuck in the middle of the ring with 50 seconds left on the clock. JBL kicks Jericho in the head with 20 seconds to go. JBL pushes Jericho from the ring and goes to one knee. Jericho drops JBL on the top rope. JBL falls back onto a prone Punk and covers for the win with one second left.
Winner via pinfall: JBL
Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler interview Shawn Michaels via satellite from his home. HBK says he is feeling okay, but Jericho didnít knock him out. HBK says this is a multitude of injuries. HBK says he will have his eye looked at on the Friday before SummerSlam, and he will be there to make an announcement. HBK says he will actually listen to his doctors for his familyís sake.
Matt Striker is in the ring and re-introduces himself. Striker thanks GM Adamle for giving him a chance to finally wrestle on RAW. Stiker says he is sure that his opponent will allow him to demonstrate his skills, then the pyro goes off and the arena goes red.
Match #4 - Matt Striker vs. Kane
Kane is still lugging that burlap sack around. Kane hits a powerful clothesline, and then catches Striker trying to slide under him. Kane connects with a big boot and a sidewalk slam. Kane climbs the turnbuckle and hits a flying clothesline. Kane finishes Striker off with a choke slam and covers for the pin and the win.
Winner via pinfall: Kane
After the bell, Kane walks to the announce position and grabs a mic. Kane says he has been in a bad place lately, but he is better now. Kane looks at the bag and says he isnít alive, heís dead.
The Grish is with John Cena to get his thoughts on his match with Batista. Cena says after watching the video of Batista you get perspective. Cena says his match at SummerSlam is the ultimate showdown. Cena says he will be ready, tonight.
Kelly Kelly stops by the GMís office to congratulate him on the job he has done tonight. Kelly mentions Kane, and Adamle says next week he will make Kane reveal what is in the bag or he will take it from him.
Match #5 - Ted Dibiase and Cody Rhodes vs. Batista and John Cena - World Tag Team Championship Match
Cena and Dibiase lock up. Cena leapfrogs Ted and hits a hip toss. Dibiase is whipped into the corner and then hits with a bulldog. Cena tags in Batista and Rhodes also tags in. Rhodes is shoved to the mat. Rhodes fires back with a forearm, and tries a sunset flip. Batista cuts him off, and then slams him across his knee. Rhodes runs into an elbow. Dibiase pulls Rhodes out of the corner and Batistaís shoulder catches all ring post.
After the break, Batista powers out of a hold, and Cena gets the hot tag. Rhodes is slammed to the mat, and Cena hits the five-knuckle shuffle. Cena sets up Rhodes for the F-U, but Dibiase is able to make a blind tag. Dibiase drop kicks Cena in the back and Rhodes then hits a DDT. Cena is knocked to the floor and Rhodes gets in a cheap shot. Dibiase then whips Cena into the ring steps. Back in the ring, Cena breaks a pin by grabbing the ropes. Rhodes and Dibiase team up on a suplex, but Cena kicks out of the Rhodesí pin. Dibiase tags in and hits a clothesline. Rhodes back in, and Cena runs into a dropkick from Cody. Cena fights back, but a leg sweep puts a stop to that. Dibiase hits a double axe-handle to the shoulder from off the turnbuckle. Cena is whipped into a double elbow, and Cena kicks out again. Rhodes slaps on a sleeper. Cena drops to one knee, and then tries to drag Cody to his corner. Batista backs away from a tag. Dibiase quickly tags in and re-applies the sleeper hold. Cena powers out of the hold, and reverses the sleeper. Rhodes runs in with a cheap shot. Cena shoots Dibiase off the ropes and connects with a sidewalk slam. Cena tags in Batista, by slapping him in the face. The two stare each other down, before Batista takes Ted out with a clothesline and then knocks Cody off the apron. Batista hits a spinebuster and follows with a spear on DiBiase. The Animal sets up the Batista Bomb, as Cena knocks Rhodes from the ring. Batista hits the bomb and covers Dibiase for the win and the World Tag Team belts.
Winner via pinfall: Batista and John Cena
After the bell, Batista and Cena look at each other in the ring. Cena hold up the belt and then Batista does the same. Cena and Batista then separately work the crowd to see who gets the bigger reaction.
Dale Plummer has been writing for SLAM! Wrestling since 2003.